Posts Tagged ‘Regina’

Regina Rooming House Bylaw – Where Do You Stand?

Sunday, August 25th, 2013

August 25, 2013

Regina bylaw rooming house

According to a report at there is a big debate over changing the rooming house bylaw in Regina.

Population is on the rise in Regina and some say we even have a ‘housing crisis.’ It’s true more and more people are coming to find work.

The City of Regina offered 3 possible options to change a 21-year-old bylaw. This old bylaw saw landlords of rooming homes threatened with large fines and even jail time.

Almost 125 people attended a meeting at the Knox Metropolitan-United Church to share their views on how the altered bylaw should look.

Currently, rooming houses are defined as “a building that is the primary residence of the owner and in which rooming units are provided by the owner, for permanent occupancy and compensation, to persons not related by blood, marriage, or adoption to the owner.”

Although enforcement of this bylaw has typically been low, in May, the City sent letters out to many rooming house landlords stating that they could face large fines or even jail time if they didn’t force out their tenants or move out themselves.

Shortly after, Mayor Michael Fougere announced that they would not be enforcing the bylaw pending a review conducted by the city.

But the debate on how the new bylaw should look has been hotly contested. On May 9th, the Whitmore Park Community Association held a meeting to discuss the bylaw. Many in attendance expressed frustration with rooming houses, claiming they eat up parking space, are unsafe and bring down property values due to excessive parties and garbage.

But for those on the other side of the issue, offering rental space helps to alleviate the housing crisis and allows for affordable housing for both the landlord and the tenants they rent to

 Deputy manager of community planning Jason Carlston and a team of city officials offered three basic options that could help to clarify the bylaw and hopefully ease tensions. Each was based on research done on how five other municipalities—Saskatoon, Edmonton, Calgary, London and Ottawa—handle the rooming houses.

#1  Less regulation

#2  Limit the number of boarders allowed in a rooming house which would also call for a   required amount of parking stalls

#3  Stricter regulations

It’s a passionate subject and the debate hasn’t let us know.  Let’s see how this works out. It’s great that a real debate is going on in our province over these types of issues. In other provinces like Ontario there’s little debate and only constant attacks on residential landlords.

Good News For Landlords: Saskatchewan Sets Employment Record

Saturday, July 6th, 2013

July 5, 2013

Saskatchewan landlords rents good news

Good News For Landlords Because Tenants With Jobs Are Tenants Who Pay The Rent On Time

According to a report in the Saskatoon Homepage the jobs picture in our province is looking good.

Saskatchewan had the strongest employment growth and lowest unemployment rate in Canada in June. That from the government after the latest numbers were released from Statistics Canada.

This is another reason why we wrote Investors across Canada and Around the World are Looking at Rental Property in Saskatchewan earlier this year.

The provincial news release indicates 568,200 people were working in Saskatchewan in June which breaks the record set one month earlier.

There were 19,300 more people working on a year over year basis.

That’s a 3.5 per cent increase – the biggest increase in working residents among the provinces.

The government says over 90 per cent of the new jobs created in the past year were full-time.

There were 12,000 more women working in Saskatchewan than a year ago which accounts for over 60 per cent of the employment growth.

The biggest employment gains in the past year were in the areas of agriculture, trade, professional, scientific and technical, and construction.

Jobs means tenants with money. It’s great news for landlords because it means rent can be paid on time. While some provinces are going backwards more and more hard-working people coming to Saskatchewan to find jobs and build a future.

To discuss this and other landlord and tenant issues go to the free Saskatchewan Landlord Forum

Staff Instructed to Discriminate Against Renters With Children?

Tuesday, August 14th, 2012

August 13th, 2012


A formal complaint has been filed to the Sask. Human Rights Commission

What’s the Story?

A former employee of a Saskatoon rental company has filed a complaint to the Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission (called the SHRC), claiming his former boss discriminates against potential tenants who have children.

Who is the Former Employee?

It is a man who does not want to be identified.

What Does He Say?

He said his former employer, Universal Realty Ltd., instructed all  staff to screen callers, including asking them how many people would be, ahem, be  living in the apartment.

“Please note that the owner of 609 Wilson Crescent would like a very strict no pet, no smoking, as well as a no children policy,” read an email dated June 18, 2012 which was sent to the man while he was still an employee of the rental company.

“When you take a call with people looking for a rental, please screen them regarding how many occupants prior to giving them information on the suites available.”

What is the Saskatchewan Human Rights Code for this?

According to the SHRC code, landlords cannot deny housing accommodations to families with children or ask for inflated rent in order to keep tenants with children out.

Is Discrimination Common?

Despite these regulations, however, discriminating against renters with kids is quite common, said Rebecca McLellan, the executive director of the SHRC.

“We know that it’s going on to a significant degree,” she said but unfortunately, it’s not an issue which many people will file a formal complaint on.

Are People Even Aware of the Law?

Many renters, and some landlords, aren’t aware of this law, said McLellan of why they receive so few complaints. She adds, however, that there are landlords who are familiar with the code, but intentionally subvert it.

“We’ve seen people who are aware of the rules but don’t like them and are willing to try and work behind the scenes to determine whether someone has children before they rent to them,” she said.

Are there any Exceptions to the Law?

McLellan notes that the only exception to the adult-only regulation is a building designated as 55 years and older.

“[Landlords] who rent exclusively to that age group, they are protected under the human rights code but once they go out of that age group, they would have to take families as well,” explained McLellan.

What Does the Owner of Universal Realty Ltd. Say?

Tom Cuelenaere, owner of Universal Realty Ltd., said he understands those rules and that his company does not discriminate against tenants with kids.

“We don’t have a policy against children or Natives or seniors or whoever.”

The owner said that sometimes owners of buildings prefer that their property remain quiet and so they ask rental companies to not rent to tenants with kids. If this happens, Cuelenaere said he will inform them that it’s illegal to do so.

“We have to say ‘well, there’s absolutely no way we can discriminate against children or any type of a person,’” said Cuelenaere.

With regards to the emails, Cuelenaere said rental companies have a right to screen potential tenants based on their ability to pay and information they receive from references.

Cuelenaere emphasized, however, that he never personally told his employees to not consider renters with kids and he will clarify the email message with them.

“I haven’t instituted any policy of this kind,” stated Cuelenaere.

So Why Did His Employee Speak Out?

The owner said the former employee who was released was likely “annoyed” with Universal Realty Ltd.  Maybe he wanted a bit of ‘revenge.’