Is there a rental housing crisis in Montreal?

Is-there-a-rental-housing-crisis-in-Montreal-min

Montreal is the hottest real estate market in Canada right now, posting record sales and attracting investors from all over the world. Some people already fear that the growing interest in Quebec real estate will inevitably shoot up the prices and potentially the rents as well. Historically, investors stayed away from the province of Quebec due to political and language issues as well as the famous Regie du Logement, which tends to favour the rights of tenants over landlords.

Why the sudden interest in Montreal properties? Montreal has always been a favorite tourist destination, and now fast becoming a city everyone wants to work and live in! Just like our frigid winters, the average property prices in Montreal are extremely low (when compared to the rest of Canada). In the past 2 years, demand for rental units has surged with the arrival of foreign students, temporary workers and new immigrants. Not to mention, the new mortgage rules have forced many first-time buyers to rent instead of buy. The vacancy rate is so low right now in Montreal, that as soon as you list an apartment for rent it goes right away.

Renters are having a hard time finding long term housing. The short-term rental market has taken over the city of Montreal, and it is a difficult phenomenon to regulate. Despite the new provincial law B67 which took effect on April 15, 2016 as well as subsequent local municipal by-laws, the number of short-terms rentals has skyrocketed, leaving many residents out of a place to live.

Since 2016, countless stories have been reported about tenants being evicted, condo units being used as short-term rentals causing disturbances and even tenants subletting to others without the consent of their landlord.   Recently, 13 Little Burgundy residents were evicted following a change of ownership of a 6plex on Notre-Dame St W. The new owners plan to convert the units and offer them on Airbnb as short-term rentals. (CTV MONTREAL 2019)

On April 18, 2018 we heard the story of Andrew Chapman, who found himself surrounded by short-term renters in his 9-unit condo building. Instead of having regular neighbors, there were different people coming in and out like it was a hotel. (CBC NEWS 2018)

Operating short-term rentals in Montreal is legal provided the host abides by the regulations. If this sounds like something you may be interested in, keep in mind the regulations call for permits, certifications, insurances, declaring your revenues to Revenue Quebec and paying the tourism taxes amongst other things. New powers have been given to Revenue Quebec to have inspectors investigate illegal rental units and give out fines between $25 000 to $50 000. Since 2018, 963 warnings were given according to Genevieve Laurier, from Revenue Quebec. (Global News 2019)

If these regulations are not enforced and short-term rentals are more lucrative than the traditional 1-year lease, this business model will not go away. In the short-term, this is a fast-growing industry and going full steam ahead to fill a need, without considering the consequences. However, in the long term if this continues, Montreal will experience a shortage of good quality long term rentals and potential hikes in rents.

Eleni Akrivos is a Chartered real estate broker and President of North East Realties, Real Estate Agency in Montreal. Eleni is a lecturer in the Residential Real Estate Program at College Lasalle and Co-Hosts The Real Estate Show on CJAD AM800 radio every Sunday at 1:00pm. To send her questions or comments please write to eleni@nordestimmobilier.ca and visit www.northeastrealties.ca for articles and videos.

By: Eleni (Helen) Akrivos – info@mtltimes.ca
Share on facebook
Facebook
Share on twitter
Twitter
Share on linkedin
LinkedIn
Share on email
Email


COVID-19 cases rising across Quebec schools

COVID-19 cases rising across Quebec schools

Although Quebec’s CAQ government continues to maintain that Covid-19 cases in schools across the province remain stable – the numbers published by their own Ministry of Education do not appear to uphold those conclusions. Their data includes pre-school, elementary and high schools in both the public and private sectors (as well as vocational and adult

electric scooters

Are you supposed to allow your children to ride electric scooters?

Like almost anything, electric scooters can be safe or dangerous depending on the operator. The technology powering Green electric scooters has advanced to the point where it is extremely safe in comparison to where they were in the past. Nowadays, you will find electric scooters with world-class braking technology, improved speed restriction, and even better

Best roulette strategies

Best roulette strategies to try

Roulette in some form has been around since the 17th century and has become an entertaining casino staple across many parts of the world. The game can be played by players of all levels due to its relatively simple nature and shorter learning curve than many other casino games. The idea of the game is

Covid-19 outbreaks at Lakeshore

Covid-19 outbreaks at Lakeshore General Hospital

After dealing with several Covid-19 outbreaks during April and May, the Lakeshore General Hospital is now facing another battle. This time three units have cases, with four respiratory therapists also infected as of November 30th, according to a Montreal Gazette report. A source, who granted them an interview ‘on condition of anonymity’ (as they were

winter vaping

Here is how to improve your winter vaping experience

‘Inhale the good shit, exhale the bullshit,’ says an avid vaper who can’t resist it even in extremely cold weather. Instead, vapers claim to love vaping the most in the winter season. Why? Well, it keeps them warm from inside out while helping them enjoy the chilled and windy days in complete relaxation. Resulting, we

Skiing regulations

Skiing regulations with no aprés ski

With winter just around the corner many Quebecers are wondering or asking how ski hills are going to handle new regulations this year. There is no question that this year ski hills will have their challenges. Skiers will have to wear face masks inside the chalet at all times and on the chair lifts, as

Mtltimes Subscription

The latest on what’s moving Montreal and the world – delivered straight to your inbox