Has the new legislation regarding rent regulation become effective? Can I still increase the rent without limitation? If the new rules have come into force, which notice can I provide the tenant with?
The (retroactive) part of Bill 124 that deals with removal of exemptions for newer properties from the Residential Tenancies Act came into effect when the bill received Royal Assent. This means that any above-guideline increase notice given before April 20, 2017 would be valid. For notices given on or after that date, the rent increase will be at or below the guideline rate (1.5% for 2017).
This is explained in this brochure from the Landlord and Tenant Board: http://www.sjto.gov.on.ca/documents/ltb/brochures/2017%20Rent%20Increase%20Guideline%20(EN).html
As of now there are no more exemptions to the rent increase rules. In other words, to increase the rent, you will now have to use an N1 form, and give an increase of no more than the guideline percentage. Remember that the notice period has to be at least 90 days, and must coincide with a rent payment date.
The guideline is usually announced in August for the following year. You can find more information about this on our website at https://landlordselfhelp.com/annual-rent-increase-guideline/ and at https://www.ontario.ca/page/rent-increase-guideline
When you purchase a property with tenants in possession you assume whatever agreement they have in place with the previous owner. Therefore, when you take over as the new owner you are not allowed to increase the rent unless it’s by the allowable guideline and if the tenants have not had an increase in the past twelve months. To increase the rent you must give the tenants a 90 day notice on a prescribed form which is a Form N1.
We did not increase the rent last year. Can we add 2 years’ worth of increases this year? How much is the max increase?
If you don’t take an increase each year, you will not be able to recover it. In this case you can only increase the rent by this year’s guideline amount. You can find a link to the current amount on our website at http://www.landlordselfhelp.com/RentIncreaseGuideline.htm.
My rental unit was destroyed in a fire and I renovated it with enhancements, can I increase the rent?
A landlord may increase the rent above the guideline amount due to capital expenditure. The landlord must file an application to the Board for approval to increase the rent above the guideline amount. An above guideline increase cannot exceed the guideline amount plus 3%.
Is this article in the Toronto Star correct http://www.thestar.com/business/real_estate/2013/04/25/condo_renters_pay_hefty_price_for_downtown_living.html? Can landlords charge an existing tenant an annual increase of whatever the market will bear?
This article refers to Section 6 (2) of the Residential Tenancies Act which provided certain exemptions from the rent control portions of the Act. New legislation is in the process of being enacted that will abolish these exemptions and make all units in Ontario abide by rent control regulations. To read more about the forthcoming legislative changes, please click the following link: http://www.ontla.on.ca/web/bills/bills_detail.do?locale=en&Intranet=&BillID=4755.
I gave the tenant a 90-day notice for a guideline rent increase. A co-tenant moved out and wanted to be taken off the lease. A new lease was signed with the remaining tenant and now she is saying I can’t raise the rent for 1 year. Is that right?
You are still entitled to the rent increase in this case because this would not be considered a new tenancy. The tenancy continued and remains the same despite the fact that one of the tenants has moved out and she signed a new lease.
Can I increase the rents above the guideline amount because I put a new roof on the unit 3 years ago?
Landlords can apply to the Landlord and Tenant Board for an increase above the guideline based on capital expenditures. However, the capital expenditures must be completed and paid for within an 18-month period that ends 90 days before the date of the first rent increase requested in the application. You can read more about this issue at the following link to the Board’s information brochure on applications for rent increase about the guideline, http://www.sjto.gov.on.ca/documents/ltb/Brochures/Information%20about%20AGI%20Applications%20(EN)%20Revised_Bill140_June15_2015.pdf.