Ontario Protecting Tenants from Unfair Rent Increases

Province Keeping Rental Housing Fair and Affordable

RICHMOND HILL York Region MPPs Dr. Helena Jaczek, Steven Del Duca, Chris Ballard, Michael Chan, and Reza Moridi are pleased to announce that Ontario has passed legislation to help keep rental housing affordable and predictable for individuals and families in York Region and across the province by protecting tenants from unfair rent increases.

The Rental Fairness Act, 2017 expands rent control to all private rental units, including those occupied on or after November 1, 1991. Effective April 20, 2017, landlords cannot raise rents more than the rent increase guideline, which is 1.5 per cent in 2017. Any rent increase notices above this amount given on or after April 20 must be reduced to 1.5 per cent.

The legislation also introduces additional protections for tenants, including:

  • Enabling a standard lease to help both tenants and landlords know their rights and responsibilities, while reducing the number of disputes
  • Protecting tenants from eviction due to abuse of the “landlord’s own use” provision
  • Ensuring landlords can’t pursue former tenants for unauthorized charges
  • Prohibiting above-guideline rent increases in buildings where elevator maintenance orders have not been addressed
  • Removing above-guideline rent increases for utilities, to protect tenants from carbon costs and encourage landlords to make their buildings more energy efficient.

Landlords can continue to apply to the Landlord and Tenant Board for above-guideline rent increases where permitted, and can also determine rent levels for new tenants.

Expanding rent control and strengthening protections for tenants are key components of Ontario’s Fair Housing Plan, to help more people find an affordable place to call home.

Making the rental housing system fairer is part of Ontario's plan to create jobs, grow our economy and help people in their everyday lives.


“Today is a good day for tenants in this province. In the face of dramatic rent increases and unfair practices, our government is answering the call to bring fairness and predictability to Ontario’s rental housing system. With the changes under the Rental Fairness Act, Ontarians can rest assured that they will continue to have an affordable place to call home.”

— Chris Ballard, Minister of Housing and Minister Responsible for the Poverty Reduction Strategy

“We recognize that housing costs are rising dramatically in Ontario without enough affordable rental options to meet people’s needs – Ontarians deserve protection against unreasonable rent increases. By delivering substantive rent control reform as part of a review of the Residential Tenancies Act, we will help keep people’s housing costs stable while bringing consistency to the province’s rental housing market.

─ Reza Moridi, M.P.P., Richmond Hill

I’m pleased that our Government continues to take steps aimed at assisting individuals and families across our province and those living in York Region, in keeping rental housing affordable and predictable by protecting tenants from unfair rent increases.

Dr. Helena Jaczek, M.P.P., Oak Ridges-Markham

“I am proud of our government’s prompt action to protect tenants in Markham-Unionville and across Ontario faced with housing costs that are rising dramatically and unreasonably.  This legislation makes Ontario’s rental housing system more fair, stable and is a balanced approach that provides consideration for both tenants and landlords.”

— Michael Chan, M.P.P., Markham-Unionville


  • Ontario is also strengthening its transitional housing system by exempting transitional housing providers – like those that provide mental health and addiction supports – from the Residential Tenancies Act for up to four years, as long as participants are protected by written tenancy agreements. This will help more people successfully transition to longer-term, stable housing.
  • There are approximately 1.2 million private rental households in Ontario.
  • The annual rent increase guideline is capped at a maximum of 2.5 per cent.


Residential Tenancies Act

Landlord and Tenant Board 

Ontario’s Long-Term Affordable Housing Strategy

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