Friday, December 12, 2008

Rent Me

Returning Vancouver City Councillor Tim Stevenson has tabled a motion that is intended to help people who rent their apartments.

"Specifically, it calls on the province to amend the Residential Tenancy Act to "require landlords to allow tenants evicted for the purpose of renovations to reoccupy their units once renovations are completed at the same rent as they were paying prior to the renovation."

THat quoted paragraph is taken from the Sun's Don Cayo, who argues convincingly that this notion, while well intended, will result in slums and no new rentals being built.

"Think about it. A landlord who collects $600 a month for a suite could spend tens of thousands of dollars on upgrades, then continue to collect $600 a month.

Or he could keep collecting $600 a month without raising a finger (or spending a cent.) You don't need a degree in rocket science to figure out how this will end."

Cayo urges other levels of government to create opportunities for builders to want to build rental stock.

"Among them, work with Ottawa and Victoria to end some of the tax disincentives. Untangle city hall's red tape. Convince developers to provide rental housing in exchange for things like extra height or extra density for new housing projects."

As much as I like Stevenson and admire his dedication, I am afraid his motion is ill-conceived and that Cayo has a clearer eye on the prize.


keith said...

until they get rid of condos, there will never be affordable housing.

Anonymous said...

Condos in and of themselves are not a bad thing....

EMPTY CONDOS or pied de terres (sp??) are making home ownership unaffordable.

I will continue to rant that, if someone wants a little private hideaway to visit in downtown Vancouver (i.e. an owned condo which mostly sits empty) - Great!!

They should be nailed with more taxes for owning an empty condo than most people can possibly afford.

That way, MAYBE Oprah Winfrey and other billionaires could possibly afford to have an empty condo to visit once in a while.

The rest would have to be sold to people who will actually LIVE IN THEM OR RENT THEM OUT TO PEOPLE WHO LIVE IN THEM!

The prices would go down due to increased availability.

Linda Yuill