January 1st, 2012
Happy New Year!
BC landlords take note: A Landlord can increase rent each year up to (but not greater than) the percentage equal to the inflation rate plus two percent. The allowable rent increase for each calendar year is available on the Residential Tenancy Branch’s website. For 2011, the allowable rent increase is 2.3%. For 2012, it is 4.3%.
Here’s how it can be calculated. Example:
|Your current rent:||
|2012 allowable increase (4.3%)||
|Your new rent||
If a Landlord charges an amount higher than the allowable amount, the Tenant does not have to pay the excess rent unless the Tenant has been served with a dispute resolution officer’s order allowing the rent increase.
Here are the Rules:
The notice must be served three full months before the rent increase takes effect. For example, Janet moved into an apartment on June 1, 2010 and pays rent of $700.00 per month. Her Landlord serves her a Notice of Rent Increase by mail on February 20, 2011 to pay rent of $716.10 beginning June 1, 2011. This rent increase was done in accordance with the Act.
If a Tenant has paid an increase that was higher than the permitted amount, the Tenant may deduct the amount from future rent.
To raise the rent above the permitted amount, the Landlord must have either the Tenant’s written agreement or an Residential Tenancy Branch order. The Landlord still has the burden of proving any claim for a rent increase of an amount that is greater than the prescribed amount. The Tenant(s) will have an opportunity to appear at the hearing of the application, question the Landlord’s evidence, and submit their own evidence.
With rising costs and potential upcoming political pressures on the horizon, it could be a good idea for British Columbia landlords to make sure they raise rents in 2012!
Tags: 2012 rent increase