CORPIQ is demanding compensation for landlords forced to provide free housing.
The resumption of hearings at the Régie du logement as of June 1st brings a sigh of relief to the thousands of landlords who have been waiting for months to have situations of non-payment of rent, repossession, access to housing and behavioural problems heard.
According to the figures collected during surveys conducted by CORPIQ in April and May, between 9% and 10% of landlords are waiting for one or more hearings at the Régie du logement for cases of non-payment of rent.
"Non-essential businesses have already resumed their activities. It was more than urgent that the justice system be put back into operation. On the other hand, the rents lost by landlords will not be paid and they exceed 100 million dollars", explained the director of public affairs of CORPIQ, Hans Brouillette. "In Montreal, 15% of May rents are unpaid. »
Evictions postponed to July: unacceptable without compensation
Furthermore, CORPIQ believes that it would be intolerable for the government to force landlords, 70% of whom have only a duplex or triplex, to continue to provide free housing to tenants for months on end. It therefore asks the Minister of Housing, Andrée Laforest, to reassure them by announcing a compensation program.
The postponement until July 6 to enforce eviction orders issued before March 1 and until July 20 for those issued since March 1 means additional losses for landlords. One out of two (48%) are concerned about mortgage payment difficulties and 43% have personally experienced a loss of income from a source other than rent.
"If the Quebec government has one good reason to block evictions again, let it be revealed now. If that reason is related to COVID-19, then it would be a public health issue of collective responsibility. The government must therefore compensate the landlords who are forced to continue to provide free housing," said CORPIQ spokesperson Hans Brouillette. "The government is not forcing anyone in the health or food sectors to provide their essential services without being paid. Why should landlords be treated differently and assume a greater personal burden for this pandemic?”
Between 3% and 4% of landlords currently have at least one court decision ordering the eviction of a tenant, but they are still unable to enforce it because a ministerial order in effect since March 17 prohibits it.
"We have desperate landlords who have been waiting for six months to at least put an end to the accumulation of their losses, knowing that the rents owed will never be recovered," continued Mr. Brouillette.
Another situation is also being feared: the moving period begins on June 1st and CORPIQ expects tenants not to leave at the end of the lease, thus blocking the arrival of the new tenant.
"It is the bona fides tenants who will be sent to wait in hotels while the unauthorized occupant of their future accommodation will not be worried until the end of July. This is unfair," concluded Mr. Brouillette.