As the leaves begin to fall with the changing of the seasons, so too should the expectations of landlords. The pandemic continues to impact rental rates and new laws may lead to further challenges for those who rent their property.
1. Toronto’s white-hot rental market is on the decline, with the average monthly price of a one-bedroom apartment in Toronto at $2,013, down 13.8% year-over-year. Two-bedroom rents have fallen 8.9% over the past year. The average rent is now $2,655. The downward trend is primarily precipitated by people vacating the city for larger, cheaper places in driving distance and short-term rentals entering the long-term housing mix as the pandemic continues to restrict and deter travel.
2. Toronto homeowners looking to let their properties for a short-term period (less than 28 consecutive days) must now register with the city at a cost of $50 per year. The process is one of a slew of new rules. Other changes restrict listings to someone’s principal residence, which means they cannot legally run more than one short-term rental, and set a maximum of 180 rental nights per year. Short-term rental operators must post their city-issued registration number in all advertisements on any short-term rental site such as Airbnb, VRBO, Expedia, Hotels.com and Booking.com, and have to start collecting a 4% municipal accommodation tax in the new year and remitting it on a quarterly basis. Failure to follow the rules will result in a fine between $300 and $1,000. Offenders may also be removed from rental sites.
3. The Ontario government says it will bring forth legislation this fall to freeze rent for most families in 2021. The maximum allowable increase by landlords was supposed to have been 1.5%