MONTREAL – After examining 61,000 advertisements for housing for rent in Quebec, the Regroupement des committees logement returns to the charge with its request to establish a rent register and even a rent control.
Maxime Roy-Allard, spokesperson for the Association of Housing Committees and Tenants Associations, suspected that with such a low vacancy rate for housing, prices had climbed. But the magnitude of the increases sometimes surprised him.
To have a clear idea of the inventory, the group noted 60,987 ads for rental accommodation in Kijiji, from February 21 to May 27.
These are units that are advertised for rent, not already rented units – which may be less expensive, since sometimes tenants have lived there for several years and the rent has therefore not always followed market increases .
In Montreal, for example, the studios posted an average rent of $ 935, three-and-a-half room apartments $ 1140, four-and-a-half rooms $ 1317 and five-and-a-half rooms (and more) $ 1563.
There are significant variations in the different boroughs of Montreal. In downtown, the studios reached $ 1,184, the three and a half $ 1,535.
Even the Sud-Ouest — Verdun posted $ 1,130 for the studios, $ 1,331 for a three and a half.
In LaSalle, it was $ 671 for the studios, and $ 778 in Villeray — Parc-Extension.
In the less fortunate district of Hochelaga-Maisonneuve: $ 931 for a studio, $ 1,084 for a three and a half, $ 1,298 for a four and a half and $ 1,580 for a five and a half and more.
In Quebec City: $ 665 for a studio, $ 801 for a three and a half room apartment, $ 917 for a four and a half room apartment and $ 1170 for a five and a half room apartment and more.
In Sherbrooke: $ 501 for a studio, $ 595 for a three and a half, $ 710 for a four and a half, $ 957 for a five and a half.
In Saguenay: $ 488 for a studio, $ 564 for a three and a half, $ 690 for a four and a half, $ 887 for a five and a half.
In Trois-Rivières: $ 439 for a studio, $ 527 for a three and a half, $ 626 for a four and a half, $ 745 for a five and a half.
Armed with this data, Mr. Roy-Allard returned to the charge: it is necessary to establish a public register of rents, so that the tenants can know the cost of the previous rent and contest, if necessary.
Currently, “some landlords do not fill out the section of the lease where the old rent is to be written” or “the tenants have no way of checking whether what is written there is true”, he criticizes. -he.
Second demand: “compulsory and universal rent control”. Currently, the Régie du logement sets out an index each year, a sort of guide for calculating possible increases, but that does not bind the parties, explains Mr. Roy-Allard.
He would like the burden to be reversed, for there to be an obligation to follow this index and for the owner to justify an increase greater than this Régie index.
To those who would say that rents are much higher in Toronto and Vancouver, Mr. Roy-Allard replies that “we must not become the next Toronto or the next Vancouver”, cities that have been “emptied low-income tenants. “
Lia Lévesque, The Canadian Press
Video: Advocacy for better control of rental prices (Le Devoir)