The province’s Residential Tenancies Tribunal is investigating whether a senior couple’s eviction to make way for an Airbnb-style conversion of their apartment is retaliatory.
Last Christmas, a Fredericton couple received a notice of a 67 per cent rent increase. They complained to the tribunal, which decided the increase was too high considering the area.
This month, the couple are again facing eviction after they received a notice their apartment is to be converted into a Airbnb-style “short term rental.”
Pauline Tramble, 67, and her husband, Charles Tramble, 84, again went to the tribunal.
Service New Brunswick Minister Mary Wilson said Friday that while landlords are allowed to change their business model from residential to tourism, the tribunal is looking for proof the conversion was not “retaliatory.”
“The residential tenancy officer who is assigned to her case is looking into this,” Wilson told Information Morning Fredericton Friday. “Is it a retaliatory change? Is it a true change? Are the [landlords] acting in good faith or not?”
The landord would have to have a plan for the conversion and follow through, she said.
The Trambles and their neighbour all received the notices three days after the New Brunswick government passed legislation to limit rent increases by 3.8 per cent and “protect tenants from terminations without just cause.”
After the rent-increase cap was announced, a video surfaced of landlords discussing ways to get around the temporary rent-increase cap. They discussed converting to short-term rentals and planning extensive renovations as ways to get current tenants out, so they can increase the rent as much as they want for the new renters.
Tribunal only investigates if tenants complain
Wilson said it’s up to tenants experiencing these problems to…