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My landlord gave me a notice that my rent is going up on the 1st of the month. Can they still raise my rent during the COVID-19 emergency?

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My landlord gave me a notice that my rent is going up on the 1st of the month. Can they still raise my rent during the COVID-19 emergency?
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My landlord gave me a notice that my rent is going up on the 1st of the month. Can they still raise my rent during the COVID-19 emergency?
Reviewed: 
August 5, 2020
Answer

The Ontario government hasn't made any announcements about a rent freeze during the COVID-19 pandemic. So as long as the rent increase is legal, it can still go ahead.

Your rent increase is probably legal if:

  • your landlord gave you written notice at least 90 days before the date of the increase
  • the notice is properly filled out on the Landlord and Tenant Board's Form N1
  • the date of the increase is at least 12 months after your last rent increase
  • the amount of the increase is less than or equal to the provincial guideline for the year which is 2.2 % for 2020

But if your unit was never occupied for residential purposes on or before November 15, 2018, your landlord doesn't have to follow the guideline. In that situation, landlords can raise the rent by any amount, as long as they follow the other rules mentioned above and they use a Form N2.

Between March 19 and August 4, the Landlord and Tenant Board (LTB) wasn't scheduling eviction hearings or making eviction orders for unpaid rent. But even though those evictions were stopped for a while, you will probably have to pay your landlord all the rent that you owe them eventually.

The Ontario government hasn't announced any new financial help for renters, but the government of Canada has created a new benefit program for some people affected by the pandemic. You can check this site for more information about these benefits and other income supports you might be able to get.

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