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Ottawa is now offering a one-time $500 payment to low-income renters
As rising rental prices strain many tenants’ budgets, some low-income renters can apply for a bit of relief.
The federal government is offering a one-time $500 payment to help ease the cost of housing.
To qualify, renters must be tax residents of Canada, and at least 15 years old as of Dec. 1. In 2021, your individual income had to be $20,000 or less, or your family income had to be under $35,000. Applicants had to have filed 2021 income tax returns, and the amount of rent paid in 2022 has to be at least 30 per cent of your 2021 income.
There are some extra rules if you have roommates, pay for meals, or pay rent to a relative.
To apply, visit your Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) account, or My Service Canada account.
While the federal government touted the payment as “immediate relief” for low-income Canadians, anti-poverty advocates told CBC News that the relief will be short-lived.
“It is very much a small drop in the bucket,” said Dania Majid, staff lawyer at the Advocacy Centre for Tenants Ontario (ACTO), pointing to rising demand at food banks as more Canadians struggle to afford their bills.
“It might help for one month, but what’s the family going to do the next month?” Read more
The average price of a Canadian house is down again, dropping to $632,802 in November
That’s according to new figures from the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA). The number of home sales have fallen as well, dropping by almost 40 per cent.
The cold weather in November typically pushes buyers to the sidelines this time of year, but the market was especially frozen this year.
The average selling price of a home placed on CREA’s Multiple Listing Service was $632,802. That’s 12 per cent below what it was a year ago, and down 22 per cent from the peak hit in February this year.
That was before the Bank of Canada started its aggressive campaign of rate hikes, which has taken the wind out of the market’s sails by making it much more expensive to borrow money. Read more
This story will make you think twice before renting your home out on Airbnb
Cigarette butts, damaged furniture, scattered clumps of hair and blood were just some of the surprises that awaited Samantha Morahan when she checked on her Calgary basement suite after renting it to a couple on Airbnb.
When the guests arrived, Morahan says she could immediately tell something was off, but relied on the fact that their Airbnb account was verified — even though the account was new and had no existing reviews.
Morohan said she sent the guests a message about the smell of cigarette smoke coming from the unit before eventually confronting them in person. The guests denied smoking, and Morohan contacted Airbnb. The rental platform told her to either ask them to leave, let them stay, or call the police.
As the evening went on, Morohan heard the couple fighting and getting increasingly aggressive. Morohan opted to call the police.
But before authorities arrived, the female guest came upstairs and started yelling at Morohan, accusing her of having relations with her partner.
Eventually the police arrived and convinced the couple to leave.
Morahan and her husband have taken down their Airbnb account, but she says they’ll honour existing reservations for people they’ve vetted and have had conversations with.
“But other than that, we’ve stopped our instant booking. We’ve stopped it all.
Airbnb responded saying there are measures in place when situations like these happen — like a 24/7 safety line that’s accessible to all hosts during active reservations, staffed with a team trained in de-escalating dangerous situations.
He says there’s also an AirCover program that provides $3 million in property damage protection. Read more
We’ll be back with the newsletter and new investigations in January.
In the meantime, we wish you and your loved ones a safe and happy holiday season.
See you in 2023!
What else is going on?
Average rents in Canada have climbed above $2K for the first time ever
And there are no signs of it slowing.
Stellantis is recalling 1.25 million Ram pickup trucks
Tailgates may not close completely, and cargo could spill onto the road.
This child’s doctor is 2,800 km away
For 10 years, the family has been travelling from Clyde River, Nunavut, to Ottawa as their medical needs became more complex.
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