During this unprecedented time, the rules, relief available and government statements are ever changing. And they’re changing because of the various impacts COVID-19 is having on how and if we can work and how we live. As such, the information below regarding rent payments and evictions in the residential context may change.

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I strongly suggest that you keep yourself updated by visiting reliable sources such as your province’s landlord and tenant board and the official websites of your local and provincial governments. It is also important to note that the below relates to Ontario, as other provinces such British Columbia have halted all evictions and rent increases.

Can a landlord evict anyone during the COVID-19 declaration of emergency? 

Generally, a landlord cannot evict a tenant for non-payment of rent during the COVID-19 declaration of emergency. This is because a landlord must obtain an order from the Landlord and Tenant Board before they can evict a tenant for non-payment. However, as of March 19, the Landlord and Tenant Board has suspended issuing new eviction orders. This means no hearings related to eviction applications and no eviction orders will be conducted or issued, unless the matter relates to an urgent issue such as an illegal act or serious impairment of safety.

Does a tenant have to pay rent?

If the tenant is still employed or is obtaining relief payment or is able to pay rent, they still have to pay rent. Premier Ford and Mayor Tory have stated that if a tenant has to choose between paying for food and paying for rent because they no longer have the funds to pay for both, then they will not have to pay rent. No further rules or direction have been provided by any governing bodies. There are no rules regarding whether or not a tenant must prove that they have no income before they stop paying rent. It is up to the landlord and tenant to negotiate any rent relief and it’s strongly urged that any negotiations are concluded in writing. It must be made clear as to when and if the deferred rent payments are to be repaid.

If a tenant stops paying rent, can the landlord issue a Notice to End your Tenancy for Non-payment of Rent (N4)?

It is likely that a landlord can issue an N4 and file for a hearing as applications are still being processed. It is our suggestion that your landlord obtain legal advice.

Will my application for eviction be scheduled?

In Ontario, hearings related to eviction applications will not be scheduled at this time. However all incoming applications will continue to be processed. You can still process your application, but a hearing will not be scheduled until further notice. Hearings for matters not relating to evictions (such as illegal acts) will proceed by the most appropriate means (telephone or written hearing) and orders for these matters will be issued.

Will my application regarding my tenant rights be scheduled?

As mentioned above, in Ontario, hearings related to eviction applications will not be scheduled at this time but incoming applications will continue to be processed. Hearings for matters not relating to evictions (such as landlord has illegally entered the unit) will proceed by the most appropriate means (telephone or written hearing) and orders for these matters will be issued.

Can a tenant get a rent subsidy?

The federal government has proposed various forms of support. While no “rent subsidy” is offered, various other forms of income and tax relief have been provided.

Can a landlord get a rent subsidy?

Rent subsidies are province dependent. British Columbia and Alberta are offering rent subsidies while others are providing other forms of relief. The federal government has not provided any specific rent subsidies but has proposed various forms of support.

Should I obtain mortgage relief?

Some lenders are offering various types of mortgage relief. We ask that you carefully review these mortgage relief offers as these offers are highly complex and can result in unforeseen expenses. Note that you may also not qualify for mortgage relief as it is dependent on your personal circumstances.

11 COMMENTS

  1. It is completely unfair to the landlord to pear the responsibility of paying mortgage, repairs , Utilities ( heat and hot water ) and Taxes for the Tenants who does not pay rent , from where I got money to take care , in the other of the equation, the government does not offer help or reliefs to either landlord or tenant.

  2. I’d like to know when the government will allow a landlord to evict a bad tennant. I have one who has zero respect for the property and is combative with others who live here. He often plugs the toilet, and steals things.

  3. John W said it best! Professional Abusive Tenants are destroying any hope for Landlords in this province that to the Government! The worst perpetrators in the Rental Market scene are those on Government Assistance! If the Government wants private home owners to cater to these subsidized families, then the Government should, at least, make sure that the Rent portion of their Social Assistance payment should go Directly to the Landlord! This was done in the past….why not now? Seeing as the Government ‘doesn’t care’ that they provide for the ‘free assistance’ for these unscrupulous benefactors, all such Tenants should also be put up in Government Housing Only! Let the Government look after these folks in their own subsidized housing units.

  4. True. I have sold my 2 properties due to these issues and now hold only one. This tenant was delaying payment even before Corvid and now he is taking advantage of Corvid issue.

  5. There was an interesting comment about the immigrant topic you refer to in Yahoo News a few days ago. Sounds like you might have seen it…
    ===
    And now this:
    Vanity Fair: “Higher Than We Ever Saw in the 2008 Crisis”: Why the Coming COVID-19 Mortgage Crisis May Be Worse Than the Last One
    ===
    Scroll down in the article (even so it’s American) to the part about how (BIG) banks are affected by rent default vis a vis mortgages and what happened in 2008 (and there was no virus except a paper one.)

    Carolyne L ?

    “Higher Than We Ever Saw in the 2008 Crisis”: Why the Coming COVID-19 Mortgage Crisis May Be Worse Than the Last One
    With companies like Equinox, Staples, and the Cheesecake Factory, along with millions of tenants, not paying their rent, the ripples are already being felt on Wall Street. And the storm may be immense.

    Read in Vanity Fair: https://apple.news/AGStpkSSvSMmNljG1xNGJaw

    Shared from Apple News

  6. This is called forced wealth distribution however most landlords are not wealthy and are just getting by. With the government slamming landlords in ever direction and not building affordable housing, your best bet is to be an illegal immigrant and have the government put you up in an all expense paid hotel. Thanks Trudeau!

  7. The government has pulled the rug out for under the Landlords. Generally people that have for years tried to have something to retire on down the road. The Government is already providing an income supplement for those that lost jobs and if they still think the tenants don’t have to pay rent if they say they can not afford it then let the government give the tenant a rent supplement.

    • The government has also provided mortgage relief for landlords . most landlords will not pass this on to the tenant . this is unfair

  8. I’ve been a small potatoes 3 unit landord for 15 years in Ontario. I’ve also never seen the quality of tenants so low as the last 2-3 years… the last two sets of delinquent and combative tenants took between 4-6 months to have removed. Just a disgraceful situation aided entirely by laws that are useless to me and a terrible climate of tenant entitlement. Zero respect for the property. This has cost me thousands in lost rent, unpaid utility bills (surreptitiously put in my name!) admin fees, time, serious stress, just to regain possession of the property and then begin the process of disposing of mountain of garbage, furniture, food.
    Now I’m fumigating, cleaning and painting – TO SELL!!!
    I’m done! 15 years of providing keys to safe, clean, perfect premises to lying, backstabbing, irresponsible fraudsters. There is no incentive for any landlord to provide this service or product in this province.
    And no I’m not a patsy, I vetted these tenants over the years, but times have changed quickly and the majority of tenants are no longer worth renting to.
    Adios to a Big Headache.

  9. Unfortunately most tenants feel that landlords are rich. They do not consider that buyers of income properties just starting out have often taken on huge debt with the hope of a better future years from now. The regulations applied to rentals are making investment in rental properties less attractive every year.

  10. Say farewell to private investment in rental properties in Canada…….landlords cannot carry the general public…
    banks, utility companies and the municipalities are not interested in halting taxes or interest while tenants wear out the place.

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