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Tenants

Ward 22 has the highest percentage of tenants in Toronto. I am committed to working closely with tenants and the provincial government to restore real rent control to curb spiralling apartment rates.

 

I also understand that the relationship between a tenant and a landlord can often be difficult and confusing. If you rent an apartment or house you have special rights and responsibilities that are governed by City of Toronto by-laws and provincial legislation. Tenants have the right to live in a clean, well-maintained building and not be subjected to rent increases above the provincially mandated increase without reasonable justification, or eviction without a fair hearing at the Landlord and Tenant Board.


The following contact information is for various organizations and agencies that are able to assist you with information, advice and support if you encounter any issues related to your tenancy. As always, please feel free to contact my office for help with any issue related to your
apartment or rental agreement.

 

City of Toronto Municipal Licensing and Standards: 311 (toronto.ca/311)

Federation of Metro Toronto Tenants’ Associations: (416) 921-9494

Ontario Tenants Rights

Housing Connections (TCHC): (416) 981-6111

Toronto Rent Bank: (416) 924-2543

Ontario Landlord and Tenant Board: (416) 645-8080


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My letter to tenants and to Minister Kathleen Wynne

Dear Ward 22 tenant,

 

I've heard from many of you that being a renter in Toronto is becoming increasingly difficult and it feels like every month, your budget is being squeezed tighter. High provincial guideline rent increases, coupled with Above the Guideline Increases allowed by the Ontario government for basic upkeep and repairs have pushed rents that were already steep into the unaffordable range. In addition, the low vacancy rate has made it near impossible to find lower-cost alternatives elsewhere.

 

It's time for real action to protect tenants. Please see the reverse for my letter to the Honourable Kathleen Wynne, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, advocating for reforms that will support your right to accessible, affordable rental housing.

 

This past May was unseasonably hot. I heard from many of you in apartments that your units were uncomfortable and that sleeping, in particular, was difficult. Toronto's tenants have the right to a comfortable and healthy home. That's why I put forward a motion that seeks to establish appropriate room temperatures for tenants.

 

My motion looks to change the Municipal Code to reflect the reality that before June 2nd, it may not be necessary to keep the heat on due to warm or hot spring temperatures. Further, it may be necessary to set an acceptable maximum temperature at which rooms can be heated.

 

Knowing your rights as a tenant and how to protect them can be a challenging process. Various aspects of being a tenant and your relationship with your landlord are governed by different levels of government. Please visit the tenants page at www.joshmatlow.ca for a list of community resources. I'm here to advocate for you – if you have any questions please feel free to give my office a call for assistance.

 

Sincerely,

 

Josh Matlow
Toronto City Councillor
Ward 22 – St. Paul's

 

 


 

July 17, 2012

 

 

The Honourable Kathleen Wynne, M.P.P.

Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing

777 Bay St., 17th floor
Toronto, ON M5G 2E5

 

Dear Minister Wynne,

 

I would like to thank you for your recent initiative to cap Guideline Rent Increases. Over 60% of the residents in my ward rely on renting for their housing needs, the most out of any ward in Toronto; as such, my constituency was hit particularly hard by the 3.1% Guideline Rent Increase last year.

 

With low vacancy rates across the city, many renters have little choice but to accept high rents. By capping the Guideline Rent Increase at 2.5%, Bill 19 will help many residents in my ward make ends meet as they pay their bills each month; this is a good first step towards maintaining the affordability of rental housing here in Toronto and across the province.

 

I hope that this bill will pave the way for similar action in regards to Above the Guideline Increases (AGIs). My constituents have told me that AGIs should only be allowed where landlords are providing new amenities for their tenants, and provided that units have been kept in a state of good repair. The prospect of reintroducing vacancy controls along with a cap on rent increases for new units should also be explored, as the current conditions of low supply and high demand in the rental market give the landlord a tremendous amount of leverage in negotiating rent for a new tenancy.

 

On behalf of the tenants in Ward 22, St. Paul's, and across the city, let's work together on making Toronto a more affordable place to live for all its residents.

 

Sincerely,

 

Josh Matlow
Toronto City Councillor
Ward 22, St. Paul's

 

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My letter regarding the pool closure at 45 Dunfield Avenue

Eugene Hankin

Property Manager

45 Dunfield Avenue

Toronto, Ontario

M4S 2H4

 

 

July 4, 2012

 

 

Dear Mr. Hankin,

 

My office has received numerous phone calls regarding the pool closure in your building at 45 Dunfield Ave. I understand that the reason behind this closure is a result of a fire in the change room and that it is not planned to open again until mid-August.

 

Please let me, and your building's residents, know what steps you are taking to reopen the pool.

 

As the hottest days of summer approach, the residents' need for their pool will only increase. I ask that you do what you can to open the pool as soon as possible.

 

Sincerely,

 

 

Josh Matlow

Toronto City Councillor
Ward 22-St.Paul's
www.joshmatlow.ca

   

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Councillor Matlow's Tenants' Town Hall Update

 

Dear residents,

 

Thank you to everyone who attended my Tenants' Town Hall. I hosted this community meeting to inform you of your rights and to discuss with you what action is needed to protect them. It was a pleasure seeing so many tenants actively engaged in our community.

 

Many of you have asked that information from the meeting be available online. Click here for a copy of my handout listing important resources. Click here for a copy of keynote speaker Kenn Hale's speech. To see photos of the event, please click here.

 

I would also like to thank the insightful speaker and panelists:

 

 

Please do not hesitate to contact me or any of the services listed above regarding any relevant issues you may be having.

 

Sincerely,

 

Josh

   

TENANT DEFENCE

What is the Tenant Defence Fund?
Tenant Defence Fund is a program established by the City of Toronto that helps tenants preserve affordable rental housing. The Fund supports a Tenant Support Grant Program and a Tenant Outreach and Organizing Program.

  • The Tenant Support Grant Program provides direct grants to tenant groups wishing to challenge their landlord's application for a rent increase above the guideline (AGI) demolition of their buildings, conversion of their buildings to condominiums and other applications determined on a case-by-case basis. The grants cover the costs of hiring legal or technical professionals to help tenant groups prepare for the challenge and represent them at the legal proceedings.
  • The Outreach and Organizing Program helps tenant groups to organize and prepare for hearings at the Landlord and Tenant Board for rent increase disputes, or at the Ontario Municipal Board for demolitions and condo conversion matters. The Outreach and Organizing Program helps tenants with other matters as needed. The Federation of Metro Tenants Associations (FMTA) is contracted by the City of Toronto to provide the outreach and organizing services.

Read more: TENANT DEFENCE

   

Toronto Star: Politics holding up $481M for affordable housing

Political posturing between Ottawa and Queen’s Park is holding up $481 million in federal-provincial funds to help the homeless and other Ontarians struggling to pay for housing, the Star has learned.

 

The bilateral agreement, signed earlier this summer, is part of a larger federal framework announced in July which sets out how Ottawa and the provinces will spend $1.4 billion on affordable housing over the next three years.

 

But until the agreement between Ottawa and Queen’s Park is formally announced, none of the money earmarked for Ontario can be spent. It means all new construction, rent supplements, renovations and affordable home ownership programs in the province are on hold.

Read more: Toronto Star: Politics holding up $481M for affordable housing

   

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