MNA calls for crackdown on Montreal’s commercial real estate speculators

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Neighborhood businesses are being squeezed by promoters amid a pandemic, Ruba Ghazal says.

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A Shiller Lavy for rent sign in the window of the Saint-Viateur Street bakery of De Gaulle Helou in Montreal on Thursday, July 11, 2019.A Shiller Lavy for rent sign in the window of the Saint-Viateur Street bakery of De Gaulle Helou in Montreal on Thursday, July 11, 2019. Photo by Allen McInnis /.Montreal Gazette

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A Québec Solidaire (QS) MNA urges the provincial government to work quickly with the city of Montreal to protect the business sector from property speculators.

Ruba Ghazal, MNA for Mercier Riding in Montreal, cited the example of the Arts Café in the Mile End district, which had to close after a rent increase of 40 percent.

Ghazal wants the government to put mandatory registration of commercial leases on the Quebec Real Estate Register to help commercial tenants defend themselves against unscrupulous landlords.

She also wants commercial leases to be standardized with mandatory clauses that set parameters after the contract is signed. Currently, commercial leases are complex and sometimes more than 100 pages long. This enables landlords to take advantage of their tenants.

Ghazal claims neighborhood businesses are being crushed to the detriment of the local economy in the midst of a pandemic. She argues that landlords feel like they can get away with anything because the government has left commercial tenants to fend for themselves.

  1. The interior of the Mile End Arts Café before it is emptied on March 26th.

    After a 40% increase in rent, Mile End’s Arts Café runs out

  2. Trynne Delaney reads in a long line at St-Viateur St. during one

    Mile End residents are protesting rising rents