From: Josie Beamish, thenorthbaybay.ca staff
NORTH BAY — It’s no secret that the ongoing pandemic has had a negative effect on everyone – but none have suffered so much as the humble landlord.
While many were forced to go into work on the basis of being deemed “essential” and were subjected to the daily horror that accompanies dealing with the public, local landlords lived in constant fear that people could enjoy shelter without first paying for the privilege.
As if those awful fears weren’t enough, the housing bubble meant landlords could be selling their property at any time – sometimes for 30 to 100k over asking price. But forced evictions of cash-strapped essential workers became a horror from which there was no escape.
“I used to be able to just call the police to get them out but now they have this ‘tenant board’ that’s mucking up the process,” says Amanda Pataki, a local landlord with 7 properties under her management.
Living Off Scraps
Frustrated landlords are at their wits end. Unlike havens like New Brunswick, Ontario landlords are limited by how much they can raise the rent.
“It’s insane,” continues Pataki, “with inflation the way it is and wages stagnating, my income is drying without a rent increase. I’m only pulling in a measly $18,750 a month.”
“You can barely live off those scraps.”
No More Fords
While she empathizes with the average overworked blue-collar renter, Pataki is asking the public to try and see things from a landlord’s point of view.
“I might be forced to get another property,” moans Pataki. “I don’t want to, but I might have to.”
“Imagine the stress of purchasing and leasing property, having to wake up day in and day out wondering if I might need to fix something, wondering if I’ll ever be able to afford another fully loaded 2022 Ford F-150.”
“It’s a nightmare. I just want to do as little as possible and live a stress-free life getting paid for something basic that everyone needs. Is that too much to ask?”
Indeed, in these trying times, we must remember those hit hardest by the pandemic. Consider donating extra rent to your landlord this month to help them through this crisis.