RentSmart Alberta: Increasing Housing Stability in Alberta

2018-2019 Annual Report Highlight

People renting a place to live want a safe, suitable, and affordable home. Landlords want their tenants to pay the rent on time and take good care of the property. But knowing how to be a good tenant or a good landlord doesn’t always come naturally.

That is where Capital Region Housing (CRH) and RentSmart come in. CRH is the provincial provider of RentSmart, a tenancy education program that offers support and coaching to help tenants have successful relationships with landlords. Better relationships between tenants and landlords, in turn, help decrease homelessness and increase housing stability. In a survey of RentSmart participants, 97 per cent of those who replied reported that the course “provided them with the knowledge they needed to be a good tenant.”

CRH received $49,000 in funding from AREF to increase awareness, and acceptance of RentSmart across Alberta with outreach and landlord engagement as well as traveling to a number of different communities in the province.

RentSmart Basics is a three-hour engaging and interactive session that includes a manual. When a person successfully finishes the session, they receive a letter of completion to use a reference with a landlord. The RentSmart Certificate covers six modules over 12 hours in a classroom. People learn tenant rights and responsibilities, how to budget to make sure they can cover their rent, and how to communicate with landlords, neighbours, and roommates. Upon successful completion, participants get a certificate they can show landlords.

CRH is the largest provider of social and near market housing in the Edmonton area. CRH manages over 4,500 social housing rental units and over 600 near market housing rental units, and leads community initiatives that promote housing stability and foster healthy tenancies. Since 1970, the CRH mission has been to provide safe and affordable housing that meets community needs.

Read the Alberta Real Estate Foundation’s full 2018-2019 Annual Report.