Ontario Landlords Association




For the Ontario Landlords Association, the announcement of a 2.5 per cent cap is said to be not enough to maintain rental properties and keep tenants safe.

“Successful small landlords know the importance of win-win relationship with our tenants. We do not want to raise rents in an unfair fashion. However, it’s important for us to have a reasonable rent increase guidelines and 2.5 per cent is too low,” it said.

“We believe the cap should be raised to a more reasonable level when inflation is so high.”

Price Index, a monthly measure of inflation, which suggested 5.3 per cent. But the government said the 2.5 per cent cap — it does not apply to vacant units, community housing, long-term care, commercial properties or rental units occupied after Nov. 15, 2018 — stops tenants from experiencing “significant rent increases.”

Miles Slauson, emergency bed worker with The Hope Centre in Welland, said that number, when broken down into living costs, will have a negative impact on people and families trying to survive as utilities bills, food costs and gas prices continue to rise.

For a one-bedroom apartment in Niagara, at an average price of $1,500 a month, tenants will see rent increase to $1,537.50, said Slauson. Over a year, that’s an additional $450.

For a two-bedroom unit at $1,800 a month, the price can climb to $1,845 a month, an added $540 per year.

“It’s not going to help people that are renting,” said Slauson, noting Ontario Works and Ontario Disability Support Program payments have been unchanged for years.

“We are still looking at many different classes of people being priced out of the rental market. We are looking at the next three to five years of having difficult times for people that are low income and working class.”


St. Catharines MPP Jennie Stevens said evictions are at “an all-time high,” and families are struggling to find affordable housing. For the province to impose any rent hike “is the last thing, I think, tenants need at this time.”

“The cost of living right now is unrealistic for an average person, or even an average family,” said Stevens. “It’s getting harder and harder and harder for everyone in the Niagara region, in St. Catharines, to live.”

Reiterating the NDP’s stance, Stevens pushed for a rent stabilization law that would ban unlimited increases in between tenants, as well as rent controls on all homes in Ontario.

She also spoke about the need — as did Slauson — for the return of the basic income pilot project, which temporarily gave a fixed income to people with low or no incomes (the provincial government cancelled the program in 2018). Stevens said that additional money would allow residents to “afford their day-to-day living.”

Because as the cost of living increases, the government assistance programs have remained the same.

“They can’t afford these rent hikes. There’s skyrocketing food, there’s medical costs, we’re probably going to see an increase in local transportation. Everything is going up except the guaranteed income,” said Stevens.




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