Quebec solidaire wants to tackle “savage rent increases”

The party wants legislation for a section of Quebec leases that allows landlords to raise prices as they see fit for rentals leased for less than five years.

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Quebec solidaire announced Sunday its intention to introduce a bill to counter the “wild increases in rents” for rentals rented for less than five years.

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Currently, Section F on Quebec leases allows building owners to increase rents as they wish, and tenants do not have the ability to challenge such increases in the Quebec Housing Court. province.

“There are incredibly high and abusive increases,” QS housing and housing spokesman Andrés Fontecilla told The Canadian Press. “In a context of housing shortage, in a context where tenants, in most regions of Quebec, cannot leave a dwelling because they will not be able to find another one, well, it is the perfect opportunity for some to impose hikes.

A Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation report released Friday indicates that in several small municipalities in Quebec, vacancy rates are close to zero percent.

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Fontecilla asks the Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, Andrée Laforest, to legislate Article F on leases.

“Does she defend the interests of families in Quebec or the interests of large real estate owners?” said Fontecille.

Laforest’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Canadian Press.

But according to the Quebec Landlords Association (APQ), clause F is necessary to promote the construction of new housing, given the significant lack of housing in different regions of Quebec.

“The expenses of a new building are difficult to predict,” declared the president of the APQ, Martin Messier. “With more flexible marketing…we can afford some room for error.”

He gave the example of landlords forgetting to complete the section and then realizing belatedly that the rents are not sufficient to maintain the building, or that “there is no one who wants to buy this building anymore” for lack of profitability.

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According to Messier, without this provision, the owner will “rent at the highest possible price” for fear of losing money, or not investing at all in new projects.

Fontecilla agreed it was something to consider in legislation, but argued that “after a year it’s reasonable to have a very fair idea of ​​what it will cost” without having to wait five years.

“We do not prohibit increases with a framework for clause F,” he said, adding above all that he wants the tenants in question to have the ability to defend themselves before the Tribunal du logement du Québec.

This article was produced with the financial support of Facebook and the Canadian Press News Fellowships.

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