The territorial government is replacing its previous Covid-19 rent regulations with a new system that could give residents up to a year to pay overdue rent.
The GNWT amended eviction rules last April as a Covid-19 relief measure, making it impossible for landlords to evict tenants who proved they could not pay rent.
On Wednesday, the NWT’s Department of Justice announced those regulations would change to allow landlords and tenants to establish “rent repayment plans.”
This will “ensure tenants have a reasonable timeframe to pay back rent that has accumulated from March 18, 2020 to January 31, 2021 as a result of the pandemic,” a news release from the department stated.
Starting in February, landlords and tenants will have one year to enter into a repayment plan that gives tenants at least 12 months to repay their rental arrears.
Tenants will not have to make their first payment until at least 30 days after the date a repayment plan is given.
The plans must include the date the repayment period starts, the due date of each installment, the total amount still owed, and the amount the tenant must pay each month.
The regulation allows either landlords or tenants to initiate a plan.
“Covid-19 has touched all aspects of our lives and our economy,” justice minister RJ Simpson stated in the news release.
“We encourage landlords and tenants to work together during this difficult time.”