There are 600,000 college and university students going back to school this fall, and Ontario has taken steps to protect those renting off-campus from unfair rent increases and evictions.
As part of its Fair Housing Plan, Ontario has expanded rent control to all private market rental units across the province to protect tenants from unfair rent increases. Students living off-campus, including in condominiums, basement apartments, and houses will have their rent capped at the annual rent increase guideline of 1.8 per cent in 2018.
Students should also know that:
Starting September 1, if the landlord wants the unit for their own use, a close family member’s or caregiver’s use, they must give the tenant one month’s rent or offer them another acceptable unit – and they can’t re-rent it for a year
Landlords are responsible for maintenance, but tenants have to keep the place clean
Renters have to give landlords 60 days’ notice before they move out if they are on a monthly or fixed term lease
A landlord can’t ban pets or guests, but if renting a condo, tenants have to follow any rules set under the Condominium Act
Open communication with a landlord can help prevent problems. Here are some more tips to help maintain a smooth relationship with a landlord:
Know the rights and responsibilities of tenants
Ask for a written lease – student renters should make sure they understand it before signing anything
Keep copies of any documents shared with a landlord
If a dispute can’t be resolved with a landlord, student renters can contact the Landlord and Tenant Board. For serious issues such as illegal evictions or disconnecting vital services like water, heat or electricity, contact Ontario’s Rental Housing Enforcement Unit.
Protecting student renters is part of our plan to create jobs, grow our economy and help people in their everyday lives.