Along with a number of CFAA’s member associations, CFAA is developing information to assist Canada’s rental housing providers in dealing with the impacts of Coronavirus (COVID-19). Expect further information as early as possible next week.
- Stay calm and check trusted news sources and government websites for the most-up-to-date information. The Government of Canada is maintaining a COVID-19 information webpage that can be accessed here.
- Wash your hands frequently with soap and water, and encourage your staff and tenants to do the same. If soap and water are not available, use alcohol-based hand santizer with at least 60% alcohol).
- Maintain your buildings as you do normally, or upgrade the cleaning schedules. Remember: viruses can live on surfaces for several days. Frequent cleaning and disinfecting of high-touch surfaces (such as elevator buttons, stair railings and door handles or push bars) is recommended.
- Consider the situation in your community and whether to close common facilities, such as gyms and party rooms. (In Ontario, such as closure will not trigger any ability by tenants to claim rent reductions, provided the closure is temporary and the facility reopens as soon as is reasonable).
- If possible, make alcohol-based hand sanitizer available throughout your office and/or buildings.
- Be prepared to answer questions and provide reassurance to tenants, or refer them to the federal or provincial government websites.
- Consider workplace policies concerning your work place health and safety issues concerning your employees, while at the same time seeking to maintain appropriate levels of service for tenants.
CFAA is interested in hearing how your organization is addressing COVID-19. Do you have a COVID-19 policy in place for staff or your buildings? Are you doing tenant education or performing increased building cleaning at your properties? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rental housing tax concerns
As a small silver lining in this large black cloud (which is COVID-19), it appears that any risk of the federal government increasing capital gains taxes, or limiting the interest which can be deducted from net rental income for tax purposes, has been reduced dramatically. In order to support the economy, the federal government will be taking steps to increase economic stimulus, rather than imposing tax increases which would dampen economic activity or cause business new problems.
Expect an update soon on the CFAA Tax Retreat, which is currently scheduled for April 6 in Toronto.
In the near future, CFAA will also update you in respect to plans for the CFAA Conference, currently scheduled to take place in Halifax on June 8, 9 and 10.