Insauga: Landlord licensing program coming next year with $300 fee in Brampton
Posted December 4, 2023
The city is one step closer to bringing in new rules for landlords in Brampton, but won’t be clamping down on corporate landlords running larger properties.
Plans are underway for a rental licensing pilot program that will require landlords to register with the city to reduce the number of illegal suites and give bylaw enforcement more teeth when dealing with problem properties.
The two-year pilot project is planned for all owners and operators of rental housing units, dwelling or rental housing units with four or less units in Wards 1, 3, 4, 5, and 7.
Council is set to rubber-stamp the pilot next week, which will see landlords pay a $300 licensing fee and cost $625,000 of city funds in 2024 and another $750,000 in 2025.
For the two-year pilot landlords will only need to pay a one-time fee of $300, but should the program be extended, the fee will be an annual cost. The pilot is set to start on New Year’s Day if approved by Brampton City Council.
The program would also set fees for landlords caught operating without a licence at $600 for the first fine, $900 for the second and $1,200 for every following offence, as well as $250 fines for infractions like failing to provide adequate waste containers, violating the grass and weed cutting bylaw
But rental and affordable housing advocates Peel ACORN have raised concerns with the program, saying larger rental properties and corporate landlords should be held to the same licensing standard as those renting individual units.
Tanya Burkart, leader of Peel ACORN, brought the group’s concerns to Brampton City Council in September with ACORN calling the proposal “incomplete” and “inadequate.”
“Many tenants living in multi-residential apartment buildings are struggling with lack of basic repair and maintenance,” Peel ACORN said. “Despite filing complaints, repairs are not done.”
The bylaw will give the city powers to refuse licensing if it will “be contrary to the public interest,” negatively impact the health and safety of any person, “create a public nuisance” or “be required for the protection of any consumer.”
Landlords would also be able to appeal decisions to issue or renew, revoke or suspend a license by filing a written notice of appeal with the City Clerk.
City staff have been directed to use licensing and renewal fees to help offset enforcement costs, with a report showing Brampton expects to recoup $550,000 from fees over the two-year pilot project, leaving a $925,000 shortfall.
The program will also require the hiring of new staff at the city, including two property standards officers, a business analyst, two full-time contract positions at the City Clerk’s office and a building division plan examiner.
Article by Ryan Rumbolt for Insauga