Rental Replacement

Redevelopment and intensification of an existing rental building is rarely without controversy. For residents, the loss of a home they may have lived in for decades is irreplaceable. Rental housing stock is incredibly important for the City to protect to ensure long-term housing affordability. As the City continues to receive new applications, this resource is to assist existing tenants in navigating this stressful process.

Who's Responsible for What?

The City recognizes that protecting the existing rental housing stock was incredibly important to ensure renting was an attainable housing option for residents, especially seniors, students and families.

Unfortunately, the City cannot refuse a development application on the basis of hardship to existing tenants under provincial rules and public policy. While there are tenant protections under the Residential Tenancies Act, the City felt they were inappropriate to deal with the magnitude of rental housing stock under threat in Toronto. As such, protections were codified in the City’s Official Plan under our Housing policies ( and

5. Significant new development on sites containing six or more rental units, where existing rental units will be kept in the new development:

a. will secure as rental housing, the existing rental housing units which have affordable rents and mid-range rents; and

b. should secure needed improvements and renovations to the existing rental housing to extend the life of the building(s) that are to remain and to improve amenities, without pass-through costs to tenants...

6. New development that would have the effect of removing all or a part of a private building or related group of buildings, and would result in the loss of six or more rental housing units will not be approved unless:

a. all of the rental housing units have rents that exceed mid-range rents at the time of application, or

b. in cases where planning approvals other than site plan are sought, the following are secured:

i. at least the same number, size and type of rental housing units are replaced and maintained with rents similar to those in effect at the time the redevelopment application is made;

ii. for a period of at least 10 years, rents for replacement units will be the rent at first occupancy increased annually by not more than the Provincial Rent Increase Guideline or a similar guideline as Council may approve from time to time; and

iii. an acceptable tenant relocation and assistance plan addressing the right to return to occupy one of the replacement units at similar rents, the provision of alternative accommodation at similar rents, and other assistance to lessen hardship

The net effect is to try and ensure that when the building is completed, the previous rental units are functionally “replaced” in the new building, and with a tenant relocation and assistance plan available to help existing tenants financially while they choose whether or not to return to the new building.

Frequently Asked Questions

When you move out, you will receive a cheque for a lump sum equal to 36 months of rent gap payments. Should construction exceed 36 months, any future rent gap payments will be mailed to your address on file.

Rent gap payments cannot be issued via wire transfer or Interact e-transfer as the City of Toronto requires physical cheques.

Units are assigned based on seniority and choice. The developer will give you six months' notice before the building is ready for occupancy. You will rank your floorplan preferences for the same unit type (i.e. studio, one bedroom, two bedroom, three bedroom), which will be incorporated into a unit offered to you three months before occupancy. If you accept the offer, you will be required to sign a formal lease for the new unit. Once the building receives its occupancy permit from the City, you will be able to schedule a visit to view the unit.

Your seniority ranking will be stated in your N13 Notice and is based on your unit type and your original move-in date (your first move-in date if you have had multiple continuous tenancies within the same building). If you moved in on the same date as another unit, it is based on who signed a lease first. If you find that the date is incorrect on your form, you will have 35 days from receiving the Notice to Eligible Tenants to dispute that date and request a correction. The landlord will issue the final seniority list 15 days after that (50 days total from when the Notices were delivered).

Yes, even if you indicate in your Tenant Intention Form that you would like to exercise your right to return, you can refuse a replacement unit up until you sign a formal lease for the replacement unit.

Every tenant has the legal Right to Return, which means you can return to a unit of the same type as the one you are currently leasing at a similar size and rent (only increased by the Provincial annual guidelines). Returning tenants will have access to all amenities provided in the new building.

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