Rent implications

Rent implications An open letter to local landlords: Rent is now tagged to mortgage payments. You bought your second dwelling as a means to accrue equity. Why not pay it off as soon as possible and just charge high rent Ð like $1,500 or even $2,000 a mon

An open letter to local landlords:

Rent is now tagged to mortgage payments. You bought your second dwelling as a means to accrue equity. Why not pay it off as soon as possible and just charge high rent Ð like $1,500 or even $2,000 a month?

Why indeed?

This action has a consequence, like it or not.

You may view yourself as providing much-needed accommodation when a tent city is growing at our legislative building.

In fact, you are complicit in increasing the cost of living for all renters.

Bear in mind that for a reasonable standard of living (no winter trips to Hawaii) rent is one-quarter of income. A rent of $1,500 demands a monthly income of $6,000, or $72,000 a year.

People earning $72,000 a year could afford to buy a house. (If there were houses available to buy, another reason why rents are high.)

By demanding renters pay your full mortgage, you are contributing to an impoverished quality of life. Will a single mom be able to afford to provide her children with skis, skates, camps, music lessons? Concerts? Plays? That is what is being sacrificed in order to cover your mortgage.

Question: Why not contribute on a monthly basis to your investment?

Some landlords believe that maintenance is a cost, but really, at the end of the day, the investment is the landlord’s, and you have net gain.

Framed like that, you could see your way to making an investment that is not on the backs of those who have less income.

If a single person earns $41,600 a year ($20 an hour), for example, one-quarter of that income works out to be $867. That would be an affordable rent. Good luck finding a bachelor basement apartment for that right now.

Currently, a single parent is lucky to find something under $1,600 a month, which is about half their income at $20 an hour.

Some landlords avoid facing this by advertising for “professional couples,” which is code for “single parents and other low-household-income earners need not apply.” Up goes the rent: Because of our housing shortage, professional couples have nowhere to buy and will cover your 15-year mortgage payments.

It comes down to perception.

Is it really the responsibility of tenants to cover your mortgage, or is it your responsibility to offer fair accommodation, and to, instead, understand your tenant is helping you to become wealthier?

When you buy a rental home, landlords, your actions affect so many.

Be thoughtful and considerate, please. Stop driving up the cost of living for all tenants.

Wages are simply not matching your profit expectations.

Thanks for considering my perspective.

Heidi Marion

Whitehorse

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A Copper Ridge resident clears their driveway after a massive over night snowfall in Whitehorse on Nov. 2, 2020. Environment Canada has issued a winter storm warning for the Whitehorse and Haines Junction areas for Jan. 18. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Winter storm warning for Haines Junction and Whitehorse

Environment Canada says the storm will develop Monday and last until Tuesday

Maria Metzen off the start line of the Yukon Dog Mushers Association’s sled dog race on Jan. 9. (Gabrielle Plonka/Yukon News)
Mushers race in preparation for FirstMate Babe Southwick

The annual race is set for Feb. 12 and 13.

The Yukon government is making changes to the medical travel system, including doubling the per diem and making destinations for medical services more flexible. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
Subsidy for medical travel doubled with more supports coming

The change was recommended in the Putting People First report endorsed by the government

Chloe Sergerie, who was fined $500 under the <em>Civil Emergency Measures Act</em> on Jan. 12, says she made the safest choice available to her when she entered the territory. (Mike Thomas/Yukon News file)
Woman fined $500 under CEMA says she made ‘safest decision’ available

Filling out a declaration at the airport was contrary to self-isolation, says accused

Yukon University has added seven members to its board of governors in recent months. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
New members named to Yukon U’s board of governors

Required number of board members now up to 17

Yukonomist Keith Halliday
Yukonomist: Your Northern regulatory adventure awaits!

“Your Northern adventure awaits!” blared the headline on a recent YESAB assessment… Continue reading

Yukoner Shirley Chua-Tan is taking on the role of vice-chair of the social inclusion working group with the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences’ oversight panel and working groups for the autism assessment. (Submitted)
Canadian Academy of Health Sciences names Yukoner to panel

Shirley Chua-Tan is well-known for a number of roles she plays in… Continue reading

The Fish Lake area viewed from the top of Haeckel Hill on Sept. 11, 2018. The Yukon government and Kwanlin Dün First Nation (KDFN) announced they are in the beginning stages of a local area planning process for the area. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Local area planning for Fish Lake announced

The Government of Yukon and Kwanlin Dün First Nation (KDFN) announced in… Continue reading

Whitehorse City Hall. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
City hall, briefly

A look at decisions made by Whitehorse city council this week

Fire damage, photographed on Jan. 11, to a downtown apartment building which occurred late in the evening on Jan. 8. Zander Firth, 20, from Inuvik, was charged with the arson and is facing several other charges following his Jan. 12 court appearance. (Gabrielle Plonka/Yukon News)
More charges for arson suspect

The Inuvik man charged in relation to the fire at Ryder Apartments… Continue reading

The grace period for the new Yukon lobbyist registry has come to an end and those who seek to influence politicians will now need to report their efforts to a public database. (Mike Thomas/Yukon News file)
Grace period for new lobbyist registry ends

So far nine lobbyists have registered their activities with politicians in the territory

Most Read