april rent

Landlords and tenants across Canada are worried as due date for April rent approaches

April rent is due on Wednesday, and in the famous words of Pitbull, "I knew my rent was gon' be late 'bout a week ago."

With an astonishing number of Canadians out of work due to the COVID-19 outbreak, landlords and tenants alike are worried about the upcoming monthly rent payment.

The Canadian government is introducing a number of financial measures to help Canadians that are sick, quarantined or unable to work due to the pandemic, but the money won't be available until April — leaving many Canadians stuck in limbo.

Ontario premier Doug Ford has yet to implement a rent freeze or offer financial assistance to tenants, but he told Canadians that they shouldn't pay rent if they can't afford it.

"If you have a choice between putting food on your table or paying rent, you're putting food on your table," Ford said. "And if you can't pay rent, and you're just in absolutely crisis, then you don't have to pay rent."

The Ontario Real Estate Association echoed his words, writing, "The Province of Ontario has an obligation to help the situation: allowing tenants security in their homes during the crisis is the right thing to do."

However, OREA clarified that if tenants can afford to pay their rent, then they should do so.

On March 25, B.C. premier John Horgan announced that a moratorium will be placed on evictions and rent increases during the COVID-19 pandemic.

He also said that the provincial government will be providing up to $500 in rent supplements for those whose income was affected by the pandemic.

However, Horgan added that he can't "guarantee it will be in their pockets by April 1."

Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan have similarly banned evictions and are actively encouraging tenants and landlords to find a solution to the complex April rent situation.

No provincial government, however, has yet to freeze rent — leaving many Canadian tenants worried.

More than 750,000 Canadians have even signed a petition asking the federal government to freeze rent.

And many tenants are pointing out that the provincial government's advice to simply come to an agreement with their landlord isn't exactly helpful.

But it's not just tenants that are worried.

Canadian landlords that rely on rent for income are anxious that their tenants won't have the means to pay April rent, leaving them unable to put food on the table.

The bottom line? If Canada freezes rent, then it should also freeze mortgages.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau previously said that Canadians should not have to worry about their ability to pay rent, buy groceries, or pay for extra child care due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Hopefully, the Prime Minister continues to take steps to accomplish that.

Lead photo by

Jeremy Gilbert

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