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Tenant Tips

Rent Increases

There are 3 rules your landlord must follow to raise your rent.

1) 12 Months Apart

After you move in, your landlord must wait at least 12 months before raising your rent.  Any increase after that must also be at least 12 months apart.

2) 90 Days Written Notice

Your landlord must give you a written notice at least 90 days before your rent goes up.  To do this, your landlord should use one of the notice forms from the Landlord and Tenant Board.  If your landlord does not use a form from the Landlord and Tenant Board, the notice must include all the information that is on the form from the Landlord and Tenant Board.  You can check the form on the Landlord and Tenant Board website at http://www.sjto.gov.on.ca/ltb/

3) Guideline Amount

By the end of August each year, the provincial government announces the guideline for rent increases for the next calendar year.  Your landlord has the right to raise your rent by that amount.  The guideline amount for 2019 is a 1.8% rent increase and for 2020 is a 2.2% rent increase.

More information can be found at http://www.sjto.gov.on.ca/documents/ltb/Brochures/2020%20Rent%20Increase%20Guideline%20(EN).html

A Landlord Can Ask For:

  • Your rental history (current and previous accommodations)
  • References (landlord, employer or personal references may be requested)
  • A credit check
  • Your source of income and your monthly household income
  • Whether or not you have pets
  • Whether or not you smoke
  • The number of people (adults and dependants) who will be moving in
  • Last month’s rent deposit

Remember:  

Always view the rental housing before exchanging money and always ask the landlord for a receipt when providing rent money.

Know Your Rights:

The Residential Tenancies Act

The Residential Tenancies Act (RTA) is the law that sets the rules for rent increases, evictions, repairs, and many other issues that affect tenants.  The RTA applies to most rental housing in Ontario, such as rooms, apartments, houses, mobile home parks, and retirement homes.  But some rental housing is not covered by the RTA.  For example, you might not be covered in a place that is supposed to be used for business, or if you share a kitchen or bathroom with the owner or a close family member of the owner, some types of temporary or seasonal housing or those living on Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory.

The Landlord and Tenant Board

The Landlord and Tenant Board (the Board) is the tribunal that settles disputes between landlords and tenants and enforces their rights.  It is like a court but less formal.  You can apply to the Board and ask the Board to make an order if your landlord is not following the rules set out in the RTA, for example, not doing repairs or maintenance, or not respecting your rights.  Landlords can also apply to the Board, for example, if they think a tenant owes them rent or has caused damage.  When someone applies to the Board, the Board will schedule a hearing and at the hearing, you and your landlord can each present your case to a member of the Board.  After the hearing, the Board member will make an order detailing what you or your landlord must do.

Contact: 1-888-332-3234
Website: http://www.sjto.gov.on.ca/ltb/

If your rental housing needs repairs and your landlord isn’t helping, call your local Property Standards Office. They will inspect your home and may issue a work order to your landlord.

For public health complaints, including unsafe water, contact your local Health Unit, Hastings Prince Edward Public Health.

Legal Help

Community and Advocacy Legal Centre (CALC)

Is a non profit legal clinic that provides free legal advice and advocacy services for low income individuals throughout Hastings County.  The clinic can help with tenant’s rights, workers compensation, social assistance and Canada Pension Plan issues, employment problems, consumer law, special education problems and criminal injuries compensation.

Address: 158 George Street, Belleville
Contact: 613-966-8686
Website: www.communitylegalcentre.ca

Landlord and Tenant Board

Contact: 1-888-332-3234 | 1-416-645-8080
Website: tp://www.sjto.gov.on.ca/ltb/

Legal Aid Ontario

For information about legal aid services, call the client service centre at 1-800-668-8258 for TTY, call 1-866-641-8867.  Press 0 and ask to speak to a client services representative.

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