Housing

Apartment Standards: RentSafeTO and Elevator Repairs

With over 30% of Torontonians living in more than 3,500 apartment buildings throughout the City, it's critical that we have a comprehensive plan in place to ensure that building owners comply with the prescribed by-laws and standards.
 
In 2017, City Council approved a brand-new Apartment Building Standards Program called RentSafeTO, which imposes regulations on how building owners operate, maintain the premises, and communicate with tenants. This program applies to buildings that are three storeys or higher, and have ten or more units.
 
Through RentSafeTO, the City's By-law Officers are required to conduct evaluations of buildings every three years and issue a score based on the results of their inspection. Buildings must score at least 50% to pass the inspection and failure to meet this standard results in an in-depth audit of the premises.
 
Property owners who do not comply with the Apartment Building and other applicable by-laws can be issued substantial fines. In addition to general fines, the RentSafeTO program also allows staff to issue continuing and escalating fines for ongoing offences by negligent building owners.
 
You can find more information about RentSafeTO on the City's website, here.
 
While RentSafeTO has provided us with some of the tools necessary to keep our apartment buildings clean, safe, and liveable, there is still more work to be done.

Delayed elevator repairs remain a top-of-mind concern in Ward 15 and throughout the City of Toronto. Currently, the City has no means to enforce the timeline by which an elevator must be returned to service following a mechanical issue. Elevating devices fall under the purview of the Technical Standards & Safety Authority (TSSA) – a Provincially regulated body.
 
Reliable elevator service is critical to keeping our City's apartment buildings accessible for families, seniors, and residents with mobility challenges.
 
At the April 2019 meeting of Planning and Housing Committee, I moved a motion directing staff to study the feasibility of establishing an enforceable timeline for elevator repairs through the RentSafeTO program.

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Housing: News from City Council

As most Torontonians will tell you, Toronto is a world class city and a great place to live. As our city continues to grow and attract new residents based on this reputation, it is important that we also take a close look at our housing needs.

At City Council last week, City Staff presented on the Housing Now initiative – a plan to address issues around affordable housing. As we know, Toronto's continued growth will place an increasing pressure on existing affordable housing. This plan, with the support of council, will unlock 11 City-owned properties to create 3,700 new affordable housing units by 2024. City Council approval is the first of many steps in this process, and residents will be consulted as planning on this project continues.