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Additional details for applicants

Information to help you complete your Peel Affordable Rental Incentives Program submission.

This information includes answers to questions we’ve received from applicants in the past.

Other information

Incentives offered

The Region of Peel is offering capital grants through the 2022 round of the Peel Affordable Rental Incentives Program, previously known as the Affordable Housing Incentives Pilot Program.

How to determine incentive request amount

We recognize that there may be differences in the amount of funding each organization needs to provide affordable units as part of its development. We ask for a justification of the incentive amount you are requesting, and we use that to determine if it is reasonably tied to the affordability provided. We do this in part by looking at the present value of the rent differences (market versus affordable) over the life of the agreement, as well as reviewing the pro forma costs against industry benchmarks. We also request information about any additional costs that may be incurred to meet the requirements of the PARIP program and will take that into consideration. These and other inputs are considered in our analysis.

Incentives per unit

The range of incentives required to support middle and low-income rental housing differs depending on various factors including the location and details of the project. For this reason, applicants are responsible for determining a reasonable amount of incentive per unit that will be required for your project, taking into consideration requirements such as depth and duration of affordability, and unit mix for larger households.

As an example, in the previous (2021) round of the program, the per unit incentive amount for approved projects ranged from $40,000 to $100,000 per unit. Each application will be considered comprehensively in every annual Call for Applications according to the review process.

Affordability

For the 2022 Peel Affordable Rental Incentives Program, the maximum rental rates for affordable units are 135% of median market rent for the local municipality, as reported annually by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation. This level of affordability aligns with the needs of Peel’s middle-income unit mix requirements and rounding.

Unit mix requirements and rounding

The program will only consider affordable units that meet the unit mix requirement, including the requisite portion of 3+ bedroom units, in order to receive funding for the 2022 Peel Affordable Rental Incentives Program.

The required unit mix is 15% 1-bedrooms, 50% 2-bedrooms, and 35% 3-bedrooms. In many cases, applicants will be required to provide a rounded number to adhere to the unit mix.

Rounding should favour larger unit sizes. We also will accept a larger number of 2 and 3+ bedrooms in place of 1-bedroom units. If you have questions about your proposed unit mix, you can email us.

If your project consists of only 1- and 2-bedroom units, you cannot apply for a portion of the units to be funded.

Unit size requirements

There are no unit size requirements specific to the program; however, we expect that affordable units will be similar in size to market units within the development.

Unit number requirements

Your project must offer a minimum of 5 affordable units. The units must be in the same project, and the entire residential portion of the project must be operated as purpose-built rental for the duration of the agreement (minimum of 25 years).

Applicant qualifications

If you don’t have experience as a housing provider, you may hire or retain the services of a team with experience in housing development or rental management. Be sure to include the details of their services in your application.

Registering as a condominium but operating as rental

A project can be registered as a condominium but operate as a rental. The entire residential portion of the building (affordable and market units) must operate as rental for the duration of the agreement (minimum of 25 years).

On-site community uses vs. community uses in the surrounding area

There is no difference in score if community uses are provided on site or in the surrounding area. Providing community uses on site would be factored into the location scoring.

Parking requirements for affordable units

You must plan for parking according to local municipal parking requirements.

Stacked townhouses

Stacked townhouses and other housing forms that meet the minimum eligibility requirements qualify for the program. Funding is not limited to projects proposing an apartment-built form.

Ongoing maintenance and capital improvements of existing affordable housing on site

The Peel Affordable Rental Incentives Program is designed to support the development of new affordable housing. Funding to support existing affordable housing on site is not being provided through this program.

Location of affordable units within the building

We recommend that the affordable units be located throughout the building and mixed with market units, however, this is not a requirement.

Land ownership of project site at the time of application

The project lands do not need to be owned by the applicant at the time of the application. There is a requirement that the lands are owned by either the applicant or a related/affiliated organization. We will be looking for additional information from the applicant regarding the ownership of the lands, and whether a transfer/sale is anticipated as the owner of the land will be party to the contribution agreement.

Scoring for energy and environmental performance category in table 2 of the guidelines and application requirements

We'll award points to buildings designed to exceed baseline Ontario Building Code performance standard by 15% or greater as demonstrated through an energy modelling report.

Scoring for planned amenities outlined in table 2 of the guidelines and application requirements (further described in section 5.11)

In most cases, we want planned amenities to have a planning application submitted, and at minimum, official plan, and zoning approvals in effect. We’ll award points if we’re reasonably sure the amenity will advance.

Determining project viability

We’ll evaluate the information provided by applicants in the project information spreadsheet (Excel template) for consistency across applications. We’ll compare this information to industry benchmarks, identifying and reviewing any major variances. In addition, the spreadsheet includes a calculation of the debt coverage ratio to support the assessment of project viability.

Planning approvals required

Applications will be considered if, at minimum, a pre-application consultation meeting has been held with the relevant local municipality.

Projects that are under construction will be considered. Applications will not be considered where the municipality has granted full or partial occupancy for the proposed project, prior to and including September 13, 2022.

Scoring for projects in very early stages of municipal approvals

The proposed budgets and future rental rates for projects in the early stages of municipal approvals will have more uncertainty. This will not impact the way an application is evaluated, apart from the scoring of points based on planning approvals obtained.

We recognize that projects early in the development process would need to estimate future rental rates.

Other sources of government funding

Please include all information about sources of funding you are exploring, including pending sources, in your application. If you intend on applying for CMHC financing or municipal incentives that have not yet been approved, let us know.

Development qualifications

Applicants must demonstrate their ability and experience in developing housing or retain services with this experience. Examples of recent housing developments (within the last 5 years) could be any multi-unit residential development, including purpose-built rental or condo.

Application status updates

We’ll aim to make our decision within about 2 months of the deadline for applications. Final Council approval is anticipated to take place within about 4 months of the deadline for applications (target). You will be told the status of your application within this timeframe.

Next call for applications

Applicants that were unsuccessful in 2021 can re-apply to future rounds.

Above guideline Increases to affordable unit rents

Above guideline Increases are permitted in any market units within the building in accordance with the Residential Tenancies Act. Rent increases for the affordable units would be limited to the terms of the contribution agreement with the Region of Peel.

Expected clauses in the contribution agreement

The Template Contribution Agreement will be available with the application materials on the program website. Applicants are required to review the Template Contribution Agreement prior to submitting their application, and if successful, are expected to execute a contribution agreement in substantially the same form.

Funding for more than 1 application

We are open to funding more than 1 application. The number of applications funded will depend on the types of applications we receive, and the funding available to us.

Funding timelines

In most cases, successful applicants will receive their capital funding at the time of building permit issuance. This may be negotiated depending on the specifics of the project and your demonstration of need.

Operational costs

We are not providing operational funding through the Peel Affordable Rental Incentives Program.

Project timeline

We expect successful applicants to ensure the project advances in a timely manner.

Support through the development approvals process

We’ll support successful applicants to get Region of Peel planning approvals. We’ll also encourage the local municipalities to provide similar support. Please note: approval of funding through the Peel Affordable Rental Incentives Program does not guarantee planning approvals at the local municipal or Regional level.

Regional waiting list vs. general public

It is anticipated that tenants for affordable units would be from the general public. Successful applicants would be required to do the following:

  • Publicly advertise and identify appropriate households for the affordable units.
  • Verify income on initial rent-up and unit turnover to ensure that household income for prospective tenants does not exceed Peel’s middle income.

Rent supplement agreement with the Region of Peel

In most cases, it’s not expected that a rent supplement agreement be incorporated into successful projects. However, the Region of Peel may consider this on a project-by-project basis. It will depend on the specifics of the project, depth of affordability provided, and available funding.

Partnerships with non-profits for referrals

We are open to successful applicants partnering with non-profits to rent the affordable units. Be sure to include details of such partnerships and the process for renting the units in your application.