For the first year since 2013, Ontario’s rent increase guideline is again meeting this maximum threshold of 2.5% for 2023. For reference, had the current rent increases been able to follow the rate of inflation, the 2023 increase would have been 5.3%, according to the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing.
/ Residential Tenancies Act
In January 2020, the Ontario Ombudsman began an investigation into the extensive delays experienced at the Landlord and Tenant Board (LTB). The Ombudsman had received about 1,200 complaints regarding the issue. The investigation is specifically looking at whether sufficient work is being done by Tribunals Ontario and the Attorney General to mitigate the backlog of cases.
The RTA specifies that a landlord is responsible for “vital services”, which are defined as cold and hot water, electricity, fuel, heat, and gas. The only exceptions to this rule would be those leases that state that the tenant expressly agrees to obtain these services and maintain them independently of their landlord. If a lease does not specify that a tenant is responsible for utilities, they cannot be made to pay for “vital services”, even if they cause a significant spike in utility charges.
The Ontario rent freeze will end on December 31, 2021. Landlords can increase rent as of January 1, 2022, if they have given the proper notice in writing (N1) at least 90 days prior. The province of Ontario has set the Rent Increase Guideline for 2022 at 1.2%.
Residential evictions were suspended on March 19, 2020 by the Ontario Superior Court, due to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. Only urgent evictions due to illegal activity or safety concerns were heard by the Landlord Tenant Board (LTB) at this time, and hearing centres were closed to the public.
September 1, 2021, Amendments to the Residential Tenancies Act – Part 2: Updates to N12 and N13 Process
Bill 184, the Protecting Tenants and Strengthening Community Housing Act, 2020, had several provisions which took effect on September 1, 2021, amending the Residential Tenancies Act, 2006 (RTA). There are now additional requirements on the landlords’ part to mitigate bad faith N12’s and N13’s, this post discusses the claims for damages available to tenants should a landlord issue either an N12 or N13 in bad faith.
September 1, 2021, Amendments to the Residential Tenancies Act – Part 1: Updates to Landlord Claims And the Hearing Process
Certain provisions of Bill 184, the Protecting Tenants and Strengthening Community Housing Act, 2020, took effect on September 1, 2021, amending the Residential Tenancies Act, 2006 (RTA). These amendments aim to create more timely and impactful resolutions to common landlord and tenant grievances heard by the Landlord and Tenant Board (LTB).