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Proposed federal rental assistance program increases scope

2020-11-20


When the federal government launched the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA) program in May 2020, it hoped to support businesses struggling to pay rent in the face of dramatically reduced income.

But as the COVID-19 relief program, managed by the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), was underutilized, the program was allowed to expire, and the Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS) proposed.

CERS

Now managed by the Canada Revenue Agency, the subsidy will allow tenants to apply directly for the relief and broadens the scope of the program. While yet to be legislated, program changes include:

  • Providing rent and mortgage support until June 2021 for qualifying businesses, charities and non-profit organizations affected by COVID-19;
  • Direct provision of the rent subsidy to tenants, while also providing support to property owners;
  • Subsidizing a percentage of expenses (including rent and interest on commercial mortgages), on a sliding scale, up to a maximum of 65 percent of eligible expenses until Dec 19, 2020 – retroactive to September 27, 2020;
  • A top-up of 25 percent for organizations temporarily shut down by a mandatory public health order.

As the COVID-19 situation continues to develop so do uncertainties around government programs, consumer responses and how to proceed. MNP is here to help you navigate through them.

Our thought leadership is recognized by industry and governments, with MNP invited in November 2020 to present our insights and recommendations on COVID-19 emergency response measures, including CERS, to the Senate Committee on National Finance. View our presentation here.

For more in-depth information on CERS and how it might benefit your business, contact your local MNP Real Estate and Construction Advisor or visit MNP.ca