B.C. announces largest max allowable rent increase in a decade for next year

The Province of British Columbia has announced the maximum allowable rent increase for 2019, and it’s the largest rent hike in more than a decade.

Next year, landlords can raise rents by a maximum of 4.5%. This figure is partly tied to the B.C. consumer price index (CPI).

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“B.C. landlords can choose to increase rent once annually,” the government said in a news release. “The maximum percentage increase allowed each year is the inflation rate plus 2%.

“The inflation rate, calculated using the 12-month average percentage change in the CPI for British Columbia ending in July, is 2.5%.”

Maximum allowable increases for the past 10 years were:

2018: 4%
2017: 3.7%
2016: 2.9%
2015: 2.5%
2014: 2.2%
2013: 3.8%
2012: 4.3%
2011: 2.3%
2010: 3.2%
2009: 3.7%

The last time the maximum increase exceeded 4.5% was 2004 (4.6%).

There is a loophole, however; landlords have the power to raise the rent above the maximum allowable amount if they have a written agreement from the tenant or an order from the Residential Tenancy Branch.

In all cases, landlords must provide tenants with three months’ notice of rent increases.

Emma Crawford Hampel / Business In Vancouver 

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