Rent and services
The rules about increasing the rent are different from the rules about increasing the charges for care services and meals.
Even if you make only one payment each month, you might be paying for rent, meals, and services all together. Your tenancy agreement should show how much you have agreed to pay for care services and meals, and how much for rent.
There may also be other services available at the care home that are not part of your tenancy agreement. You can pay for these as you need them.
There may also be care services available from other providers in your community. Your landlord is not allowed to interfere with you finding and receiving care services from any provider you choose.
What are the rules about rent increases?
The rules about rent increases in care homes are the same as for tenants in other types of housing. Your landlord must give you 90 days' written notice before your rent can go up.
Your landlord can raise your rent by an amount that the government sets each year. This is called the "guideline". The guideline is 1.8% for 2018 and 2019. It was 1.5% for 2017.
The government announces the guideline for the next calendar year by August 31. You can find out what the guideline is by contacting the Landlord and Tenant Board. For contact information for the Board see, How to contact the Landlord and Tenant Board.
Usually, your landlord can raise your rent only every 12 months. If your landlord tries to raise your rent more often or by more than the guideline amount, try to get legal advice.
How often can my landlord increase the charges for my meals and services?
Unlike rent, charges for services are not limited to one increase every 12 months. Your landlord can raise the cost of meals and services at any time and by any amount, as long as they tell you in writing 90 days in advance. If your landlord does not give you proper notice, you do not have to pay the increase.
But if your tenancy agreement sets the cost for your meals and services for a fixed period of time, your landlord cannot charge you more until the time period is over. For example, this would apply if you have a one‑year lease which sets the price of meals for the entire year.
If you agreed to pay for certain services in your tenancy agreement and you can no longer afford them, your landlord might try to cut these services. If this happens, it is important to get legal advice.
You can be evicted for not paying your rent. But, you cannot be evicted for not paying for meals or services. If your landlord tries to evict you for these reasons, try to get legal help right away.
What if my landlord tells me my boarding house is now a care home?
Some boarding house landlords might want to claim they are really care home operators. That is because there are limits on increases to the cost of meals in a boarding house, but there are no limits in a care home.
But the place you live is not legally a care home unless you are receiving a care service, and you moved in for that reason.
If you are not sure if you live in a care home, try to get legal advice.