Rent soars across the province

Robin Levinson
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Rent prices in the province increased 4.2 per cent in the past year. — Photo courtesy of ThinkStock Images

The cost of rent in Newfoundland and Labrador is rising faster than anywhere else in Canada, but governments have yet to catch up to soaring rental prices.

Over the past year, rent increased almost three times more in Newfoundland than in Canada as a whole, according to the latest consumer price index.

Rent in the province increased 4.2 per cent from June 2011 to June of this year. Rent across the country increased only 1.5 per cent.

Nicole Wilson, who is researching homelessness in St. John’s, says higher rents have priced some people out of homes altogether.

“It’s getting worse and worse,” she says. ”More people are getting pushed out onto the street.”

Wilson says governments need to adapt rental laws to take into account the higher cost of living.

People on income assistance receive a maximum of $372 a month for rent or mortage, but the average rent in the city is now $808.

Other provinces have a maximum percentage that landlords can raise rent. In Ontario, rent can only increase 3.1 per cent a year.

So far, Newfoundland has no such law.

Shannie Duff, Deputy Mayor of St. John’s, says rent control has some downsides.

She says landlords are less likely to maintain rent-controlled buildings and may convert rental properties into privately owned properties in order to avoid legal limits on profits.

“We live in a free-market economy,” Duff says.

Duff says the best thing governments can do is help increase the amount of affordable housing on the market.

“So that the people who need it the most are not totally subject to spikes in the rent cycle,” she says.

The bulk of renters are younger than 25 and especially vulnerable to increases in rent.

Wilson says young people who are just starting their careers have a hard time paying rent as they continue to pay off student debt.

City, provincial and federal governments have pitched in to fund Home Share Newfoundland and Labrador. The service matches students with seniors who rent out a room in their house for an affordable, below-market rate.

In addition to Home Share NL, the city is building about 45 affordable housing units in the Pleasantville area. The funding comes from the city, the province and the federal government.

Chris Janes, a market analyst for the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp., says higher rent is the high cost of an economic boom.

When people fight over limited rental space, rents go up.

“It’s supply and demand,” Janes says.

He’s noticed more and more basement units built into private homes as homeowners capitalize on the tight rental market.

Halifax company Killam Properties Inc. is building 71 units, also in Pleasantville. The building will be the first private apartment building built in the city in about 30 years.

But the units are hardly affordable, with rents estimated at $1,400.

Duff says government and private developments will help alleviate some of the strain on the market, but not enough to significantly drive down rental prices.

“All of these are kinds of … little approaches,” Duff says.

She says without more federal money, the city just can’t build enough affordable housing to keep up with the rising cost of rent.

Janes says we can expect rents to continue to rise.

“As long as people continue to move back to Newfoundland,” he says, “rents are going to continue to increase year over year.”

 

robin.levinson@thetelegram.com

Organizations: Canada Mortgage and Housing, Halifax company Killam Properties

Geographic location: Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada, Ontario Pleasantville

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Recent comments

  • Adam R
    October 05, 2012 - 22:31

    Ever wonder why crime is so high in Newfoundland, because when it was announced that Newfoundland became a have province rent jumped with the have status. Ask yourself this, where is the jobs in St.John's for the rent to be so high their? The oil is not in St.John's! The oil is outside and where do most of the workers live to...not in St.John's! I actually condone the crimes happening and hope the people use the stolen money to move off the island where there are some jobs but more than no-future-land! The police should relax and take their time responding to robberies. I think the cops should go on a vacation and not police anything for 1 month just to see what happens in St.John's!

  • I see
    September 25, 2012 - 23:45

    Dear Mr.Rental Owner, Hi, can you please tell me which properties you own? You see, we're moving back to town and we can afford quite a nice place, but I'd like to avoid someone with your attitude. You sound like a pyschopath. Let me know! Thanks!

  • anon
    August 16, 2012 - 18:47

    At high cost, rental companies pick and choose to whom they rent. There are vacancies, but they say no. ....is that not discrimination? One is fed excuses, given the run around, sometimes for days, and then told it is rented. Then, the ad reappears.

  • rose
    August 16, 2012 - 10:18

    Get this one while on e.i. insurance. to go to work for min. wage at 10.00 per hour you have to pay e.i.(our government) 1/2 of this including your 4% to go to work, why bother to try when you are actually working for $5.00 per hour and paying our government the other $5.00 just to go to work.

  • funkmasterbrash
    August 14, 2012 - 17:29

    Like many from the province I have worked in various other provinces following the long storied history of my family and friends of being migratory labor. As I write this I see a good friend finally realizing that his dream of raising his family here falls on migration for employment. Over the years since I moved back I have seen many friends and family do the same and while we have various govts and media outlets celebrating our `have status` and the rush of big oil we still seem to have the exact same problems that many before encountered; out migration from rural Nl--no govt has done anything for the province past the overpass. High unemployment; housing shortages, resource extraction with foreign ownership,hypocrisy of govt, high cost of living, the list goes on and on. Nothing has really changed. This one issue of affordable housing is very typical of our capitalist economy. At the municipal level I think it would be fair to say that the elected representatives of the city of St. John's are not doing a decent job in being proactive about any type of housing that does not center on short term profit for developers and the city govt. This is nothing new for local govt. The same old tired conservative approaches to development has seen St. John's sprawl beyond belief and as a capital city fall short of any notion of what a large urban city should actually look like. Every one wanting to point fingers and play the blame game. Essentially at all levels of govt we see constant greed and corruption as we continue to elect the same old white boys to positions of power. Nothing new there. As long as profit margin is the rule then we will never see any `social` attempt at any kind of affordable housing strategy by the municipal govt or the provincial. Always remember in a capitalist economy many of those setting the ground rules do not have to play by them; very few municipal or provincial govt representatives have to deal with housing as a day to day issue. They usually worry about increasing their piece of the pie at others expense.

  • funkmasterbrash
    August 14, 2012 - 17:25

    Like many from the province I have worked in various other provinces following the long storied history of my family and friends of being migratory labor. As I write this I see a good friend finally realizing that his dream of raising his family here falls on migration for employment. Over the years since I moved back I have seen many friends and family do the same and while we have various govts and media outlets celebrating our `have status` and the rush of big oil we still seem to have the exact same problems that many before encountered; out migration from rural Nl--no govt has done anything for the province past the overpass. High unemployment; housing shortages, resource extraction with foreign ownership,hypocrisy of govt, high cost of living, the list goes on and on. Nothing has really changed. This one issue of affordable housing is very typical of our capitalist economy. At the municipal level I think it would be fair to say that the elected representatives of the city of St. John's are not doing a decent job in being proactive about any type of housing that does not center on short term profit for developers and the city govt. This is nothing new for local govt. The same old tired conservative approaches to development has seen St. John's sprawl beyond belief and as a capital city fall short of any notion of what a large urban city should actually look like. Every one wanting to point fingers and play the blame game. Essentially at all levels of govt we see constant greed and corruption as we continue to elect the same old white boys to positions of power. Nothing new there. As long as profit margin is the rule then we will never see any `social` attempt at any kind of affordable housing strategy by the municipal govt or the provincial. Always remember in a capitalist economy many of those setting the ground rules do not have to play by them; very few municipal or provincial govt representatives have to deal with housing as a day to day issue. They usually worry about increasing their piece of the pie at others expense.

  • Marie
    August 14, 2012 - 13:42

    I worked forty-four years, have lived alone now for seventeen, and am receiving CPP and OAS. It certainly is a daily struggle, especially in the colder months, when heating bills go quite high. I am a diabetic so eating the proper foods is expensive also. Last September my rent went up $110.00 per month, and in less than three weeks it is going up again another $90.00 monthly. The landlord said "if I don't like it, I can get out. He would have no trouble renting the apt. to someone else." I am a good quiet clean tenant. Sometimes I get so very tired and lonely and fed up, that I feel like lying down and just giving up. I do not smoke, drink, or have a pet, or car. Isn't life wonderful?

    • Brett
      August 15, 2012 - 15:42

      Your landlord is allowed only 1 rental increase per year even if you are month to month. You should read the landlord tenant act. Your landlord is in breach.

    • Brett
      August 15, 2012 - 15:48

      Sorry mis-read that. You're looking at a $200/mo rent increase in 2 years, but off of what base? Avg. 1 bedroom rent is still $800. And will likely not move to $900 for next year. maybe $840.

  • JT
    August 14, 2012 - 08:00

    Those who would advocate for rent control need to realize that not all landlords are slum landlords. I have a two apartment house which I rent. I have to deal with increasing taxes, increasing insurance, routine and emergency maintenance (electricians and plumbers are not cheap). I will from time to time get a call late at night and have to address a tenants concerns, plus the fact that I cannot leave the province on an extended vacation simply because I have nobody to keep an eye on the apartments while I am away. Everytime a tenant moves out, there is typically a fair amount of work involved in preparing an apartment to rent, damage deposits don't always cover those costs. I'm not involved in this as a hobby, I rent the apartments to create income for myself, I assume a risk and I should be entitled to a decent income. If rent controls were enacted, I would have to give serious consideration to opting out and selling the house, which would remove two quality apartments and put more strain on the vacancy rate. So I and completely against rent controls, nobody should be able to tell you what amount of return you make with a business.

    • a landlord
      August 14, 2012 - 19:40

      well said. You are entitled to make as much as you can, so I hope you end up with more money in your pocket as a result of the increases in rents. I know I sure will.

    • kat
      September 07, 2012 - 10:49

      I assume a risk when I rent an apartment only to be told it's going up after a few months occupancy. No policy makers ever take into account moving expenses. I'm entitled to decent income for my labour but have no choice of my salary. If I don't have it, I am homeless. There is very little risk to landlords these days regarding the income they make in rentals based on the current vacancy rate. Laws favour you, not renters.

  • Lee
    August 13, 2012 - 22:09

    I am married with two children. Imoved back to my home town a few years ago because the rental housing where i was living consisted of poorly maintained houses and apartments,with rental rates going up. I landed a job in a fish plant, the best paying job I could get around here, and managed to qualify for a newfoundland housing unit, the only empty rental house we could get at the time. my original planwas to pay off what dept I had and work towards a home of our own. My monthly rent is based on income so that my rent goes up when my income goes up. Since my income varies from one month to the next, my rent changes each month. That makes budgeting difficult to do. Then there's the chance that our income may go too high, and we might have to move out. With few rental properties in the area, and even fewer big enough for a family, I constantly worry about keeping a roof over my family's heads. Forget about saving money towards a home or even paying off dept, we're fighting to keep ourselves together for another month, and the rental rates being driven up by Long Harbour and big oil doesn't help

  • Sprawl
    August 13, 2012 - 19:34

    Why do i get the feeling that everyone that is whining on this forum is either; A. a smoker B. a VLT junkie C. a drinker D. all of the above

  • Wendy
    August 13, 2012 - 12:19

    The fortunate people are the wealthy and most of those on Social Assistance. Marg's comment is correct re. the rental amount of $522.00 being paid in some places, including H & L. The common ordinary hard working person has to struggle daily just to keep their heads above water, and when they reach 65, still have to struggle. Shannie Duff has a huge house; maybe she'll rent out a couple of rooms at reasonable rent prices, seeing she's so understanding and compassionate. And what about that utter waste of taxpayers' money...Government House and property. That's sinful ! Yes, people will just have to keep leaving this Province out of need, not want. My grandson is in Alberta at age 18. And another thing; a few years back I know of someone who was lucky enough to get a Habitat for Humanity house, and now have a huge patio, privacy fence, and two satelitte dishes, so how the heck are you eligible for one of those houses ? I guess in some instances, it's "who you know". Marg, no good looking for fairness in this world because there just isn't any.

  • Guvmint Helpme
    August 13, 2012 - 11:57

    The sprawl in the city is the problem. Nothing is transit friendly and everyone needs a car. We needed to have more high density residential built in the city. Too late now. The only real options for adding housing are far away from the city and that means even if they're cheap, you spend a small fortune in a car and gas. That said, if things are so bad here, just stop whining move to Halifax. It's cheaper. Why is it that people here always expect the government to fix things?

  • Seriously??
    August 13, 2012 - 11:29

    To the few landlords who have outen themselves here, congratulations on your success and piles of cash. But I do hope Karma bites you back. There are many people who can't legit afford the high cost of rent. What about the mother of three who is going back to...umm... I don't know...its called school to get an education?? She should still be shamed and thrown out on the streets because shes trying to better herself and her kids? What about the families who lost their job, have a sick child, or just have had a real run of bad luck? I'm not talking about welfare familes, thats a whole different kettle of fish. I'm talking about those renters who are working as hard as they can to do what they can. You talk like you have no heart and you don't care, I can only assume you are the slum landlords that people talk about. Shame on you for not caring about people and like I said, I hope Karma bites you back and you find yourself on the street in the same situation. The prices are bad here, and even a two person family on min wage would not be able to do it. Not everyone is "oil rich". I'm not sure what the government can do, but I sure hope it doesn't get worse....

    • a landlord and taxpayer
      August 13, 2012 - 18:11

      I am not saying that anyone should be shamed but if one cannot afford the rent, then what am I to do, let them stay for free? Or cut my profits because I can afford to? I think not. Look, I bought up real estate for the sole purpose of making money, for the benefit of my family, not anyone else's. I do feel bad for those who end up priced out of the market, but that is life. Owning rental properties is a business, and I run it as such. Now that rent's have gone up, it is a good time to have properties available. So I personally, with respect, hope that the rents go higher and higher and higher (and then even higher). We all wish the best for ourselves and our families, and for me, ever increasing rents is a good thing. I will be sure to vote and support the political party that will create the economic climate that will lead to increased rents, and I expect you will do the opposite because that is your right as a taxpayer and citizen.

    • a landlord and taxpayer
      August 13, 2012 - 20:00

      Hey Brad, good point. However, the beauty of my situation is that I am already above water of 90% of my properties, so it is smooth sailing for me. Yes, what goes up must come down, but even if rents were cut in HALF, I'd still be making lots of profit since I own the properties outright. For me, I'll make money no matter what the rent actually is, but nonetheless, increased rents means increased profits, so I am looking forward to collecting the rent that the market is willing to pay. I really don't care who my tenants are, it is simply one of my businesses.

  • a landlord and taxpayer
    August 13, 2012 - 06:41

    I own several rental properties and I obviously am very happy about rents increasing. I am happy that there are not rent controls, and I will soon have my tenants who cannot afford more removed so that I can get in new tenants that will pay more. There are a few hoops to clear for me to get the new tenants in the home, but once that is done, it is smooth sailing. I do sympathize with people who cannot afford to keep up with the increased cost of rent, but I am in this to make money. My rental properties are profit making investments, not a social service. Every time I post a vacancy, I seek the tenant who is willing to pay the most and who has the most stable job. I do credit checks and reference checks, and I increase the rent every year. I do realize that some people may no longer be afford the rent, those complaining need to realize that there are people who can afford the rent, so for me, all is good. And to respond to a previous comment - I have nothing to do with the oil, but I DO see a benefit from the OIL and the oil and caused rents to go up, and I collect more rent, so oil has indirectly put money in my pocket. As such, the government in place will be getting my vote, since their policies have put money in my pocket.

    • Brad
      August 13, 2012 - 10:32

      Fair enough. But dont come crying to us that you're underwater on your properties and can't fill them with tenants when the bubble bursts. What goes up, must come down.

  • Jeremy E
    August 13, 2012 - 01:12

    I hear you, ChrisK. I went to university, earned two degrees and up until a short while ago, was living and working in town at a "professional" job. I was there three years, earning a couple bucks more than minimum wage, working my butt off and never once heard a peep about getting a raise. My landlord told me a little while ago that my rent was going to increase by at least a couple hundred bucks. Ha - he never made any repairs in all the years I was there (and there were lots of things that needed fixing) and I could hear mice in the walls/ceiling. So, what did I do? I punched out, packed up and left NL because I just couldn't afford to stay. I wonder how many others will follow me over the next few years? If the government wants to attract and retain more young people, I think they've got their work cut out for them. It seems only a select few are benefitting from this big oil, while the rest of us are drying up....

  • Marg
    August 12, 2012 - 21:07

    I live in an adult apt. building where most of the tenants are on Welfare. They all live alone in a two-bedroom unit, and their total rent is being paid for them in the amount of $522.00. The few others of us who worked for well over thirty-five years and are receiving only CPP and OAS have to pay every cent out of our own pockets. Those on Social Assistance are better off; most of them who haven't worked a day in their lifes. In the meantime, they are outside constantly enjoying their cigarettes, which are far from cheap. TALK ABOUT FAIRNESS IN THIS WORLD ????

  • disgusted
    August 12, 2012 - 17:39

    i work two jobs - and live with my bf - who is making good money - i would not be able to live here on my own....need more affordable housing,,,,that is a laugh -- people working out west, while there spouses are here living in housing,,when there are families out there that are on the street because there is no housing...tooo frggin sad it is....and yes we need rent control, landlords are getting away with too much, besides the cost of rent, they don't even keep the house in descent conditions to live in..(mold, filth, not looked after) and then ask for more money,,,give it up. I think that Newfoundland has become a very greedy province - the more they get the more they want and who pays for it...we do ....something needs to be done to

  • J
    August 12, 2012 - 16:26

    "Shannie Duff, Deputy Mayor of St. John’s, says . . . landlords are less likely to maintain rent-controlled buildings . . ." What a ludicrous criticism of rent control. Landlords aren't maintaining their buildings NOW. With the current vacancy shortage and excess of prospective tenants, the landlords in St. John's hold all of the power. A tenant doesn't like living in slum conditions? Too bad, the landlord can always find another desperate person to take the place. And if a tenant tries to file a complaint the Landlord Tenant Board, then they're certainly not going to get a rental reference for the next place they live, as so many landlords in St. John's expect now. Tenants have nothing to protect them landlords who don't feel like maintaining the properties they rent.

  • brett
    August 12, 2012 - 11:15

    I managed paying $800/mo rent + saving $1500 a month on a salary of $42,000. This included lunch out every day, and a monthy subway pass + a night out every week drinking. NL can't go to rent controls because the market is too small. Home ownership in NL is also massively higher. You wouldn't have any rental units if you put caps on the market - there'd be no business case for it - especially if you looked at real estate prices for more than 8 years prior. Mortgages on these properties won't get paid off for 20 years, so you can't just look at the immediate and say "oh let's apply a new rule". FYI - 40 hours@$10*52 = $20,800. While 1 person would have trouble paying for the "average" rental unit, 2 people on minimum wage should easily manage.

    • brad
      August 13, 2012 - 08:13

      Unfortunately there's no such thing as decent public transportation here in NL. I barely scrape by making just around the $30,000 mark. Oh, and I have a degree from MUN with nearly 2 years experience in my field. Something is just a bit wrong with that don't you think?

    • carogers
      August 13, 2012 - 08:44

      Well good for you, now if we all made $42,000 a year we could all do just like you. But the reality is people who work for $10 or $11 an hour cannot. Not everyone is a couple or come from a big family to share cost. It is those members of society that are victims to your life plan. Lets do the reality math.10 x 40 = 400 wk less cpp and taxes = 320 x 52 = 16,640 per year that is if you never ever have a sick day, because min wage earners do not get sick time, they are paid by the hours they work. So 16, 640 - 9,900 ( rent for year)= 6,740 Is the amt let to buy food, pay heat, and phone etc. So lets put 75.00 a week for food and 30.00 a month for phone... Thats $3,900+$360 = $4260 per yr Let us now subtract the cost of food and a phone from the remining $6,740 that leaves $ 2, 480 per year medical needs like insurance because min wage jobs serving in a small shop don't have benefits So that will be 360 per year leaving $2120 for clothing for yourself or replace something broken and gifts for work mates when they all collect or family member b-days even being conserative and not having cable TV the Internet will cost 30 a month, that's another $360 leaving $1760 divided by 12 months = 146.00 This is the amount left and if you check I left out heat and lights so your rental unit better have H&L included becase we pay $268.00 on a budget plan every month even in summer. As you can see living on min wage does not allow room for saving or the weekly night out drinking as your budget clearly stated. To live on min wage means eating the cheap processed foods, no cable, no nights out and no car. That is the reality if you can find a place for 800.00 with H&L included.

    • Brett
      August 13, 2012 - 19:17

      Agreed CAROGERS. Minimum wage is not a life long wage. It's a starting point. It's not a wage that supports living on your own. It means you must have room mates, etc. You don't want to have room mates - yet you cannot afford not to. Minimum wage is up from $6/hr before - you can't tell me that all costs have gone up the same amount as minimum wage has over the past 8 years. Rent has gone up - but heat hasn't gone up to the same degree, nor has food, insurance, or "entertainment".

    • Brett
      August 13, 2012 - 19:27

      I agree Brad: you should find an employer who is going to nurture your career and have a path that will get you to a wage that will allow you to support a family. Last year I had to wheedle + cajole a friend who was working in Mississauga in essentially an immigrant white collar sweat shop instead of accepting his 45k/yr salary and wage freezes. He has jumped companies, managed to get 65k/yr, had a promotion 6 months later and has head hunters contacting him for positions above where he is now. You can't blindly depend on others to look after you, and if you're not moving forward, the future is going to be rough.

  • Renter In St. John's
    August 12, 2012 - 10:08

    I know all too well what the rental market is like here in town. I pay $700/mo for a 2-bdrm top-floor apartment near the downtown area and I know how lucky I am to have found this place. My previous place was a 1-bdrm + den in a damp, moldy basement suite that is now renting for $650/mo - desperate people WILL pay for that sort of horrible living situation because they have no choice! I have lived in other provinces where there is decent rent control and those places are better kept up than many of the rentals here. Why? Because here slumlords KNOW people will be desperate enough to tolerate some pretty awful living conditions - in other provinces, landlords know they have to answer to the provincial rental board if they don't maintain their properties. Here, there is no such thing in place. $1400/mo units will not solve anything - too many people are not able to afford that sort of rent. If they were they wouldn't be stuck resorting to the horrible living conditions they are.

  • Just Saying
    August 12, 2012 - 09:35

    The everyday working person does not benefit from the oil but pay the price for it. Why hasn't the gov. stepped in to put a cap on what can be charged for rent? Greedy landlords need to be stopped. It is crazy people are working and can't afford to put a roof over their heads. Rent goes up but wages don't.

  • Anon
    August 12, 2012 - 08:55

    Sorry Ms. Duff, but the past two landlords I've had, were quite negligent on the rental property maintenance issue. Sure we could go to the Division, but any number of things can be done by the landlord to then get rid of uncooperative tenants. Rental property ownership is becoming a lazy cash grab for many and something needs to be done legislatively to improve the situation. Otherwise, I fear many more students will be forced out of homes by disgruntled landlords, mould or lack of funds.

  • tally
    August 12, 2012 - 07:58

    i am not sure where this figure came from but the "maximum of $372 " is false. I know a number of people on income support who receive much more than this, and if you have a child then it goes up, and if you have a disability, it is even higher. The issue is that when people buy a brand new home with a basement apt, they have to charge higher rent, as the mortgages are so high right now. A house that would have been 100 grand 6 years ago is now selling for close to 300,000. You are pressed for luck to find a half decent house with an apt for less that 280,000. Try moving to lab city where a basement apt could run you 2000 a month for a one bedroom!

  • ChrisK
    August 12, 2012 - 07:02

    Nothing many of us haven't seen coming when we get our yearly lease renewals in the mail with the notice of the "Unfortunate rental increase, sorry for any inconvenience". I make a little above minimum wage, but it seems that every time Min Wage goes up a dollar, rent goes up by $100. I don't make an extra $100 a month. With that, I have no choice but to leave the province. I'm originally from Labrador City however, and that's a whole other beast. Can't even go back to my own home town.

  • Naddy
    August 12, 2012 - 06:31

    It is time for the provincial government to step up to the plate! You can put in all the affordable housing you want but it will not fix the problem. What about the working poor? I am a single mother, making 35,000 a year. I am unable to get a mortgage without a co-signer (I do not make enough money) but I make to much for low income housing! I have had to cash out my RRSP's just to make ends meet. In 2000, I was paying $590.00 for a three bedroom house, today I am paying 1200.00! It is impossible to save money for a house when I have to pay out his kind of rent. (yes, I know, I don't need 3 bedrooms. I have a girl and a boy, so I do! Today I have a 2 bedroom house and I sleep in the den, for $1100 + pou. I can't afford anymore! Yes rent control may cause some landlords to stop maintaining their houses but seriously, have any of you looked at some of the houses out there for for rent, charging $1200-1300 a month - they are falling down! Good, hardworking people have to live in disgusting conditions. The cost of living has risen so high that the average working person can not afford rent, car payments , utilities and groceries. That is not to mention everyday living costs. Many landlords are treating their tenants like dirt and nothing is done because all rights go back to the landlord! This is not only affecting people on social assistance - it affect me - THE WORKING POOR! So Shannie Duff..try living like that for awhile and then let's hear your response!

    • a landlord
      August 13, 2012 - 06:46

      I'll bite. I will not try living on working poor wages because I know I cannot make ends meet. I actually realized this when I was a teenager, so I went out and got something called - wait for it - wait for it - AN EDUCATION. I went to law school, business school. I made investments in real estate and the financial industry, and I got a high paying job due to by credentials, and I started several businesses including fast food restaurants, gas stations, and customer service. In short, I busted my butt to have companies that make money with me having to be there, and I invested in rental properties that are all paid off and are still collecting greater amounts of rent. Now, I make a few hundred dollars a day before I wake up, and then I go to my job and earn my salary. I do feel bad for the tenants who can no longer afford the rents, but as a landlord, there are many other people who can pay the increased costs, so my challenge is to get the old tenants out and get in new tenants who can pay more.

    • carogers
      August 13, 2012 - 08:52

      This is another reality budget for Mr. Brett who makes $42,000 and thinks we should pair up all the min wage workers. Its not easy making a living and the rent hikes are making it more difficult.

  • JohnnyT
    August 12, 2012 - 06:24

    Greed makes the world go round and round. I often wonder if alien civilizations have done away with all this nonsense that we have in our societies. Boggles my mind how messed up this planet is with all of our man-made social systems. Follow the money.

  • Joseph McGrath
    August 11, 2012 - 20:23

    Once again the Telegram is fooled by big government and it"s manure spreading news story plants.The real story here is that the NL Legislature is about to increase all MHAs salaries and district allowances.Management Board has been moving towards this in its past few sessions and by Christmas all MHAs will see big salary increases and a big boast in its members allowances so that they will be able to secure year round apartmrnts etc. in St.John"s or other provincial areas and the taxpayer will realize what is going on to late.The GREEN report which changed HOUSE OPERATIONS 4 years ago will be dumped and gutted and new methods to provide more pork money for all MHAs of every party will be put in place.Once again taxpayers of this PROVINCE will have their tax dollars directed to elected members who will grab what they can.Why are REPORTERS so dam stupid.The Telegram should jump on this story now and look at the on going discussions of Management Board of the Legislature and show taxpayers the surge of public tax money to be redirected to the MEMBERS OF THE HOUSE..As taxpayers we remain such fools!!!!

  • Marg
    August 11, 2012 - 19:52

    There are people living in my apartment building; one person in two bedroom units, and Social Services are paying $522.00 for them, every single cent, while someone like me receiving OAS and CPP got to pay totally all my own rent after working for over thirty-five years. It's the people on Welfare or the wealthy that are getting off easy. Makes no difference to either how much the rents increase. In the meantime, most of these tenants are outside constantly puffing away and enjoying their cigarettes, which are far from cheap.

  • james
    August 11, 2012 - 18:14

    its making the landlords and their friends in the provincial government rich. when are you people going to get it. those overpayed useless politicians couldn't care less if you have a roof over your head, or food on the table. they are all talk, no action , lots of hot air. there only goal and i repeat, only goal is to collect that fat wage which they dont deserve, wine/dine on your dime, travel the world, and how can i end my comment without mentioning their pension, which they seem to all agree on. WHAT A CORRUPT SOCIETY WE LIVE IN.

  • Joseph McGrath
    August 11, 2012 - 17:27

    MHAs will soon get big whopping wage increases and large increases in ALLOWANCES as well.The House MANAGEMENT COMMITTEE is presently working out the HOW TO details.The MHAs will get enough to rent year round apatrtments in St.John"etc.The Green Report is to be gutted and thrown out.This IS REAL NEWS SO DO NOT EXPECT THE TELEGRAM REPORTERS TO GO AFTER IT!!!!They got bigger birds to report on like the seagull murder case.Go figure!!!!!!!!! Boy oh Boy if we only had a few reporters who could dig and report the real news it would be a big "WOW"for readers

  • Steamer
    August 11, 2012 - 12:13

    Where is the provincial government in all of this? Newfoundland is supposedly prosperous and yet there is a housing crisis in the works. Why is the government silent and ineffective on this issue? If you want to invest in people, invest in housing first and foremost. I was excited to hear that Killam was putting up a new apartment building, but $1400 units aren't going to solve our problem - not by a longshot. A single person making $30,000 a year can hardly afford half of that; hordes of minimum-wage workers can afford far less. Clearly, the free market is not alleviating the social problems we've created by driving up real estate prices. We need government intervention in the urban housing market, and we need far more than an expansion of the existing NL Housing system...

    • Zero
      August 12, 2012 - 11:02

      I am single making 42,000 per year and I can barely afford to feed myself after all things considered, let alone save for the future... And somehow I am considered in too good shape for assistance? SOMETHING IS WRONG HERE