A new pilot program that requires some Brampton landlords to obtain a license through the city has been put on ice less than a month after its launch.

This is according to an update posted to the City of Brampton's website, which says that the Residential Rental Licensing (RRL) pilot program that went into effect at the beginning of this year has been “paused temporarily” as the City reviews and streamlines its intake process. Applications for the program aren’t being accepted until further notice.

The City is attributing the pause to the need for “program refinements.” More specifically, it seems that City staff are looking at removing the requirement for the criminal record check, accepting the property tax bill as proof of ownership, not requiring condominium apartments or condominium townhouses to obtain a business licence, and pulling the “full fee waiver” period back about a month, so that it extends from March 31, 2024, to June 30, 2024 (as opposed to April 1, 2024 to June 30, 2024, as was previously specified).

The City says it’s also working on streamlining the business licence requirements for registered additional residential units (ARUs), reviewing the requirements for inspections, and improving the online application process.

After receiving unanimous approval from Brampton city councillors this past spring, the RRL program was launched on January 1, 2024. It has been heralded as the City’s attempt to curb illegal rentals, and councillors have said that it responds to the uptick in rental units, garden suites, and lodging homes in Brampton, as well as the declining quality of those accommodations.

For the few weeks that the pilot was in effect, those who owned or operated a property containing between one and four rental units were required to obtain a licence. Licensing costs have been set at $300 per year. The pilot was applicable to rental property owners and operators in Wards 1, 3, 4, 5, and 7. Those wards reportedly have the highest concentration of service requests related to property standard violations.