What you Need to Know Now About the Rental Increase in BC

 

What you Need to Know Now about the Recent Rental Increase from 4.5 % to 2.5% 

Following the posting by the Residential Tenancy Branch of the largest rental hike in over a decade, the 4.5 percent increase came as not only a shock to renters, but as opportunity for landlords to capitalize. Public outcry over the increase and lack of affordable housing concerns mounted and while landlords and tenants seem to be in a never-ending feud for balance, it seems as if this harmony is on its way one way or another.

On September 26, 2018 came an announcement the original 4.5 percent rent increase had been reevaluated following Rental Housing Task Force’s recommendations pertaining to the maximum allowable increase. Premier Horgan and Housing Minister Selina Robinson announced that their government would be adopting the recommendations, meaning the increase will now only be 2.5 percent.

While this decision provides some relief in the immediate term, concern remains whether there will be rental housing inventory that meet various price points in the long term. LandlordBC writes that, “We understand that renters across the province are frustrated by cost of housing and record low vacancy rates. In the face of increasing maintenance cost, property taxes, utilities and insurance, landlords are similarly frustrated with the pressures to keep up with ever-increasing costs to maintain, safe, high-quality homes.”

But to counter this, LandlordBC also reports that a, “ well-known and highly respected BC-based rental housing developer has built over 30% of the purpose built rental housing in Toronto over the past 15 years, by far the largest builder of rental homes in that province.

They know the GTA rental market intimately and have confirmed that several purpose-built rental projects have been cancelled and converted to condos.” (More on this later).

While this may touch on things to come, left to deal with yet another change in rental increases are frustrated landlords who have already issued notices at 4.5 percent.

Have you already served a rental increase notice?

Here’s what you need to know about the rental increase

Landlords who have already provided notice to their tenants for 2019 are required to complete an updated form with the new rent increase formula and provide notice to tenants.

*3 months’ notice requirement is not applicable to the updated notice. The effective date for any rent increase already served and received in September will not change. This means that if the rent increase was to occur January 1st serving the updated rent increase, even if it is received after September 30th, will not change this effective date.

Rent increases effective prior to January 1st, 2019 are not affected by this change in rent increase formula and still have a cap of 4.0 percent. No action by either the landlord or tenant is needed for these increases.

Are you considering serving a notice of rental increase for January 1st, 2019 or later?

Nothing has changed in the regulations pertaining the service. You are required to give 3 months’ notice on the Residential Tenancy Board approved form. If you have a rental property managed by a Licenced Property Manager, they will do all interactions and communications with your tenants. If you are managing your own rental property forms and further information can be found by visiting RTB website here.

For more information on the new rent increase visit Residential Tenancy Board. If you are a Rent it Furnished Property Managed Client we have accounted for any changes necessary. Stay up to date on News and what’s happening in the rental market, subscribe to our blog.