Canada’s one stop platform and the #1 National voice to the rental housing industry


Posted in


A law allowing Quebecers to rent their homes for short-term stays, for example, through Airbnb, will come into effect later this month, drawing concerns from housing advocates as The City of Montreal says it doesn’t have the means to enforce existing regulations.

The upcoming change is drawing concerns from housing advocates, who fear the law will allow people to skirt existing rules more easily.

The new rules, packaged into Bill 67, mean cities won’t be able to prohibit residents from renting out their principal residences with bylaws. However, the province will allow municipalities to limit those short term rentals through zoning.

Municipalities have until March 25 to enforce any zoning laws that would restrict Bill 67’s application.

While short-term rentals have been a repeated source of complaints from housing advocates, who say they can attract noisy guests to otherwise quiet residential areas and eat up available housing stock, Montreal chose not to restrict Bill 67.

A spokesperson told CTV News boroughs have already created rules for short-term rentals which will continue to apply after March 25.

The new rules will only allow Quebecers to rent out their principal residences for up to 30 days. In practice, that would allow a family to rent out their home while on vacation, or a single resident to make some extra money while away on a work trip.

However, when it comes to ensuring the rules are followed, the city says it doesn’t have the resources to police people.

“We welcome the new provincial regulations, but it is essential to give cities the means to enforce them,” wrote the mayor’s office in a statement to CTV.

“It is essential that Revenu Quebec increase the number of inspectors on the territory of the metropolis to counter the phenomenon of illegal [short term rentals].”

Without proactive enforcement, housing advocates fear Bill 67 could provide cover for people operating rentals out of their investment properties, who could theoretically claim that they live there.

Martin Blanchard, spokesperson for housing advocacy group RCLALQ, fears it will be difficult to determine whether a rental is operated out of a primary or investment residence.

“What we are saying is it creates more confusion,” he said. “It’s going to be easy to go around the laws.”

There are approximately 14,000 Airbnb listings in Montreal, according to the website Inside Airbnb, which claims to publish data “sourced from publicly available information from the Airbnb site.”

According to that website, 51 per cent of Montreal hosts have more than one listing, either inside a single building or at more than one address.

“Hosts with multiple listings are … unlikely to be living in the property,” reads the website.

“We need to have strict rules in place that can be enforced,” said Thorben Weiditz, the director of Fairbnb Canada Network, an advocacy group for short-term rental bylaws.

He says that the law could serve to the limit the amount of properties used for short-term rental instead of housing, if everyone follows it.

If enforced properly, Bill 67 would “allow people to participate in the home sharing part of this industry, but to limit the commercial aspects that have had an impact on the housing market and community cohesion.”

Airbnb lists the requirements for hosting a rental space in Montreal on their website, and instructs prospective hosts to follow all local laws and guidelines.


Story by: CTV News