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Vacancy control, rent caps ultimately harm B.C. renters

The chief executive officer of LandlordBC notes that disallowing rental increases at vacancy would be the ‘death knell’ for new rental construction

It has been suggested that vacancy control that would tie rent controls to a unit rather than the tenant would be the most cost-effective way to provide renters with immediate and genuine housing security.

But that is not really the case.

Currently, rental owners have the flexibility to adjust rents between tenants to account for building and unit upgrades and other increased costs such as property taxes, insurance and utilities, all of which are skyrocketing.

Vacancy control would remove this critically important tool. If rent is tied to the unit, the incentive for a rental owner to ensure necessary upgrades, including seismic and energy efficiency standards are completed to aging buildings, is severely compromised.

Furthermore, rental home builders confirm that vacancy control would be the death knell for rental home construction.

What is particularly concerning is that certain stakeholders continue to insist that the impact of vacancy control is “benign” and that there are no unintended consequences.

Furthermore, they incorrectly suggest that jurisdictions, most notably Manitoba, has not seen any discernible effect on new rental supply because of vacancy control. This is flat-out wrong and frankly hugely harmful to renters and our communities. …[Read More]