Renters who are experiencing a loss of income during the COVID-19 pandemic can now apply for the Province’s new temporary rental supplement. More information on this program, including eligibility criteria and how to apply, can be found on the BC Housing website here.
LandlordBC has also compiled a list of the provincial and federal financial support measures for individuals offered during this time.
Do your tenants have questions about how to apply for the Canadian Emergency Relief Benefit (CERB)? Click here for more info.
All of this information, and more, is available on our COVID-19 info page.
LandlordBC Initial Brief Analysis of the Temporary Rental Supplement Program
- Province’s decision to vary amounts makes each roommate eligible for the $300 or $500 (based on dependent status) which fits into the reality of today’s renters. So this means in a household with 2 unrelated roommates who both qualify for the benefit, they will collectively receive a benefit in the range of $600 to $1000 depending upon whether or not they have dependents.
- The Province has used a broader criteria than simply the Federal government’s CERB program for eligibility which is a good strategy. Applicants need to pass three “bars” to get the benefit: 1) 2019 income test, 2) paying more than 30% of your gross monthly income in rent, 3) being on EI, CERB, or have lost over 25% of your income. This “test” will result in better targeted support and open the eligibility beyond CERB, which is important .
- Working middle class households who lost a reasonable amount of income or a job as a result of COVID-19 or happened to be on EI rolls prior to the crisis will definitely benefit. The partial income loss points is going to bring a lot more people into the program, which is good for both renters and landlords. Students will miss out especially those who are looking for summer jobs that will likely be non-existent now. In addition, long-term unemployed and those on disability assistance will not benefit from this program.
- Clearly, more will need to be done to support both renters and landlords as this crisis continues.
- We continue to be in discussions with the Province seeking a simplified application process for owners and managers with significant numbers of applicants so that a single, spreadsheet driven application will be considered. We’ll keep you posted. Right now be sure to encourage all your tenants who qualify, to apply immediately!