These Park-Ex tenants are taking on their landlord over large rent increases

A group of Park Extension tenants is pushing back against a landlord they claim is trying to intimidate them into accepting large rent increases.

Narinder Phethy has lived in the building for three years and, despite only recently signing a new lease, said his rent will be going up by $130 per month. In addition, he said he's being forced to pay the cost of utilities, which were originally included in his rent.

“It can go up to $300 a month and that's not normal,” he said. “I think it's not justified at all.”

Tenants in half of the building's 14 apartments are protesting the hike but the landlord said he bought the building two months ago and found it was infested with mice, bedbugs, cockroaches and mould.

“We are repairing and maintaining every single thing,” said Elankkovan Ponnambalam. “I'm going to show you one-by-one what we're doing here.”

According to the Regie de Logement, a landlord can only increase sent by $2.58 for every $1,000 spent on renovations. 

One family who has lived in the building for nine years said they had no issue with their rent increase, citing renovations. However, two tenants said they would be willing to take the issue all the way to court.  

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