Congratulations to all Tessler winners of the first annual FMTA Tenant Awards.
We got lots of nominations from around the City. It's obvious that many tenants are doing amazing things in their communities!
Winners this year included:
Betty Ann Van Gastel - Perseverance Award
Natalie Hundt - Campaign Award
Liza Butcher - Courage Award
Heather O’Neil - Tireless Advocate Award
Special shout out to all nominees as well!
The Toronto St. Paul’s Tenants’ Associations Network invites you to the Toronto St. Paul’s Candidates Meeting, where you will have the opportunity to learn where YOUR Provincial candidates stand on today’s Tenant issues such as Above Guideline Increases (AGIs), Renovictions, the Landlord and Tenant Board, etc.
DATE: Wednesday, May 30, 2018
TIME: 7:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.
LOCATION: Yorkminster Park Baptist Church, Cameron Hall
1585 Yonge Street, Toronto.
A group of tenants evicted from their homes at 795 College Street for renovations are shocked that their landlord was legally able to kick them out and re-rent their apartments to new tenants, at substantially higher rents.
The tenants, some of whom have remained in the city, are pursuing further legal action.
The term “renovictions” describes a situation where sitting tenants are asked to move out for renovations by their landlord who subsequently rents out their apartments again for higher rents. This is despite legal protections which allow tenants to move back into their units after renovations are complete- at almost the same rent.
In this case, it appears the protections for tenants are flimsy at best and the Ministry of Housing has gotten involved to see if any offences under the Residential Tenancies Act have taken place. Peter Milczyn, Minister for Housing, has directed his staff to look into this situation further to see if changes to the law are warranted.
To read more, please visit:
Tenants say ‚Äòflimsy’ law opens door to ‚Äòrenovations’
Housing minister aims to curb ‚Äòrenovations’
Are you a tenant living in Toronto? Do you have questions about your rights under the law? Have you ever thought of working with your neighbours to start a tenants association? Does your tenant association want to become more effective in the building?
FMTA is pleased to once again offer its tenant school, running for two full days on June 2 and 9, 2018!
The training is free and classes are taught by experienced lawyers and community advocates. Learn about your rights under the law such as how to get repairs done, fight evictions and challenge unfair rent increases. The school is an opportunity to meet other tenants and strategize about ways you can work with each other and work with your local government to accomplish shared goals.
Registration is now open-and remains open to May 15, 2018! Please sign up as space is limited. Signing up has never been easier! You can register in the following ways:
Call 416-413-9442 or write to [email protected] to obtain a registration form!
Fill out the online registration form available at:
“Together We Are Strong!”
Following a recent enquiry into two aspects of the City of Toronto’s Winter Respite Services, the Toronto Ombudsman made several recommendations to improve both internal and public facing communications as well as enhancements to conditions in several such facilities.
The Ombudsman found that the information the City provided to the public about Winter Respite sites was “overwhelmingly outdated, inaccurate and inconsistent.” The Ombudsman visited several Winter Respite sites and found divergent levels of service and unacceptable conditions in some instances: some sites did not have showers; some had between 1 and 5 showers, only 3 had ramps, elevators and accessible toileting facilities and none had cots or beds able to accommodate someone with mobility challenges.
The ombudsman made numerous recommendations both during and after the enquiry- all of which have been accepted by the city. These include:
Require all staff to use the same terminology which should be clear and user friendly;
Clarify the role of 311, Central Intake and the Streets to Home Access and Referral Centre;
Develop a system to share up-to-date information on occupancy of Winter Respite sites;
Implement ongoing monitoring of standards at Winter Respite sites (structural issues, temperature checks, security etc.);
Develop a minimum standard for conditions in Winter Respite sites and work with community agencies to enforce them.
The city’s Winter Respite Centres were originally invisioned as a “Band-Aid on a Band-Aid” but have become an integral part of the City’s shelter system. They represent a low-barrier space for the homeless community to access services and shelter.
New! The FMTA's Tenant Organizing Manual, now available translated in Chinese!
Download a copy today by clicking here!
Ontario is introducing a new, simple standard lease that will be mandatory for private residential leases signed on or after April 30, 2018, including tenancies in single and semi-detached houses, apartment buildings, rented condominiums and secondary units (such as basement apartments).
Currently there is no standardized form for rental agreements between landlords and tenants in Ontario. The FMTA launched a campaign to secure a standardized lease in 2012.
The new lease form is written in easy-to-understand language and is templated to capture basic information such as names and addresses, the total rent and when it's due, and any rules or terms about the rental unit or building. It also outlines the rights and responsibilities of both tenants and landlords, and explains what can (and cannot) be included in a lease. For example, landlords cannot ban guests or pets.
A guide to understanding the lease will also be released in 23 languages.
On January 1, 2018, two changes to the Residential Tenancies Act that relate to the landlord’s Application for a Rent Increase above the Guideline came into effect:
- 1. A landlord will no longer be able to apply for a rent increase above the guideline because utility costs (e.g. fuel, electricity or water) have increased.
- 2. If a landlord has not complied with an order to fix an elevator (issued by the LTB, the municipality or the Technical Standards and Safety Authority), the LTB can dismiss the application or require the landlord to fix the elevators before ordering an above guideline increase.
A landlord can still apply to the LTB for an increase above the guideline if:
the landlord’s costs for municipal taxes and charges have increased significantly
the landlord has done major repairs or renovations (these are called capital expenditures), or
the landlord has operating costs for security services performed by persons who are not employees of the landlord.
Changes to Form L5
The LTB has updated L5: Application for an Above Guideline Increase to reflect the changes. Begin using this new form immediately.
For more information about Above Guideline Rent Increases, please contact our Outreach and Organizing Team at 416-413-9442.
The government has announced an action plan that would make Ontario the first jurisdiction in the world to establish standards for elevator repair timelines. This proposal will have far-reaching consequences for tenants living in the province’s many highrise apartments.
In addition to establishing a standard for elevator repair timelines, Ontario will also:
‚Ä¢ Enable collection of necessary data to inform the development of the standard.
‚Ä¢ Enhance enforcement of maintenance requirements, including through new administrative monetary penalties.
‚Ä¢ Amend Ontario's Fire Code to notify fire departments when designated firefighter elevators are out of service to improve planning and response during emergencies.
‚Ä¢ Publish information about elevator performance to help people in the province make better informed decisions before they rent or buy a home in a multi-storey building.
‚Ä¢ Help elevator owners negotiate better maintenance contracts through an education and outreach campaign.
‚Ä¢ Create new standards for new-build high-rise buildings to ensure they have enough elevators to serve residents.
The government commissioned an independent study to examine the issue of elevator availability and propose solutions, which was conducted by the Honourable J. Douglas Cunningham. The action plan addresses all of the 19 recommendations proposed in the final report.
Tracy MacCharles, Minister of Government and Consumer Services had this to say:
“Having access to a working elevator shouldn’t be considered a luxury, especially for those with disabilities, the sick and the elderly. Our proposed actions would position Ontario as a world leader for elevator repair timelines and ensure those who need elevator access, have access.”