Projet Montreal proposes landlord certification to protect tenants from rent hikes, renovictions

Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante and her party Projet Montréal is proposing the creation of a responsible landlord certificate "to protect the affordability and quality of Montreal's rental housing network."

This comes after what some have called "abusive" increases in rental prices, as well as the growing phenomenon of renovictions, where tenants see themselves evicted under the guise of significant home renovations.

"The certification will be required of landlords who have buildings with eight or more units throughout the City of Montreal, representing nearly 216,000 units," the party states.

However, for the Regroupement des comités logement et associations de locataires du Québec (RCLALQ), the measure doesn't go far enough.

"[We are] disappointed that this measure would only be mandatory for buildings with eight units or more," the organization states. "What will happen to the other dwellings that make up the majority of Montreal's rental network? For RCLALQ, all tenants in the city -- and in the rest of Quebec -- must be protected from abusive rent increases and evictions, especially in the context of a housing crisis."

Nevertheless, according to Projet Montréal, the responsible landlord certification, as part of a municipal registry, will:

  • Validate key information for tenants, such as price, building permits and condition of the buildings;
  • Protect tenants from renovictions as planned works will be recorded over a five-year period to prove their necessity;
  • Provide reliable and complete data about a dwelling;
  • Ensure the safety and health of rental buildings by requiring plans for pest management, fire system compliance, elevator functionality and mould status;
  • Allow the city to tailor its actions and programs to the condition of buildings and the needs of owners;
  • Simplify the process of finding affordable and safe housing.

"Projet Montréal is taking a strong stance to fight against abusive rent increases and the phenomenon of renovictions," said Plante. "This is a major change that will simplify the lives of Montreal tenants and support them in defending their rights."

RCLALQ notes it has been calling for a mandatory provincial rent registry for more than 35 years. 

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