HALIFAX: Amendments to the Interim Residential Rental Increase Cap Act introduced today, March 22, extend the cap and respond to concerns from tenants and landlords.
The temporary rental increase cap will be extended to December 31, 2025.
N.S. intends to set the cap at five per cent per year starting January 1, 2024. That amount will be set in regulations.
“Nova Scotians are facing challenging financial times, and that factors greatly in every decision we make,” said Colton LeBlanc, Minister of Service Nova Scotia and Internal Services. “We are always working to balance the rights and needs of tenants and landlords.
“Extending the rent cap by two years will protect renters while adjusting the amount rent can increase will support landlords.”
The current cap of two per cent per year remains in place until December 31, 2023.
The rent cap applies to residential tenants who are renewing their lease or those in a fixed-term lease who are signing another fixed-term lease for the same unit.
It does not apply to new tenants signing new leases or rental increases for lot fees in land-lease communities such as mobile home parks, as they have their own processes for setting rental increase rates.
— a five per cent increase on rent of $1,500 per month means it will increase to $1,575
— the two per cent rent cap was put in place in November 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic
— in February 2022, the cap was extended to December 31, 2023
— any additional cost to a tenant for services originally included in the lease (such as parking), or removal of a service that increases rental costs to a tenant (such as requiring a tenant to pay for electricity when it was originally included in the rent) is considered a rental increase
— about one third of Nova Scotians are renters