Date issued: January 18, 2021
Effective date: January 1, 2021

Applicability to Social Housing Programs

The City Guideline is applicable to Housing Services Act, Part VII Housing Projects, Market and Rent-Geared-to-Income, Section 78 Housing Providers (formerly 110).

About City Guidelines

City Guidelines are issued to communicate changes to the City of Toronto’s mandatory policies and procedures that housing providers must follow.

City Guidelines are issued when a Local Rule is established by the City of Toronto, the Rent-Geared-to-Income (RGI) Administration Manual is updated, or other relevant legislative changes or operational requirements must be communicated to housing providers. City Guidelines which impact RGI are incorporated into the RGI Administration Manual.

The City of Toronto is the Service Manager, as defined by the Housing Services Act, 2011 (HSA). The HSA and its regulations set out the rules that housing providers must follow in administering the RGI program along with providing authority for Service Managers to establish Local Rules for certain circumstances.

The City of Toronto has established the RGI Administration Manual as the authoritative document to be used by housing providers for guidance on how to administer the RGI program. The RGI Administration Manual incorporates the City’s interpretation of how the HSA and regulations and Local Rules are to be administered.

Please see for more information.


The Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing provides indices for costs and revenues used to calculate subsidies under the Housing Services Act, 2011 (HSA), on an annual basis.

The Helping Tenants and Small Businesses Act, 2020, revises the 2021 rent increase guideline to make it zero percent. This City Guideline updates the Toronto Market Rent Indices (Table 3) to reflect this change and is a replacement of City Guideline 2020-1.

What you should know about Cost Factors

Cost factors are inflationary factors used to calculate:

  • The indexed Benchmark operating costs within the operating subsidy calculation.
  • Capital replacement reserve fund allocations.

Housing providers must use the following cost factors when calculating their subsidies for fiscal years beginning in 2021.

Item Index Description 2021 Index
Table 1 – 2021 Indices for Benchmark Costs for Mixed Non-Profit Projects
Administration and maintenance Ontario CPI – All items -0.43%
Insurance Ontario CPI – Homeowner’s home and mortgage insurance sub-index 5.92%
Bad debt Market Rent Index See MRI Table 3 below
Electricity Ontario CPI – Electricity sub-index -13.07%
Water Ontario CPI – Water sub-index 3.01%
Natural gas Ontario CPI – Natural gas sub-index -5.57%
Oil and other fuel Ontario CPI – Oil and other fuel sub-index -26.83%
Capital reserves Ontario CPI – All items -0.43%


Item Index Description 2021 Index
Table 2 – 2021 Indices for Benchmark Revenues for Mixed Non-Profit Projects
Indexed market rent Market Rent index See MRI Table 3 below
Vacancy loss Market Rent Index See MRI Table 3 below
Non-rental revenue Factor of 1 Factor of 1

What you should know about Market Rent Indices

  • There are different Market Rent Indices (MRI) for each of the rent districts in Toronto.
  • Apartments and townhouses each have separate MRI tables.
  • Housing providers are required to use the correct MRI to calculate their subsidy.
  • There are no MRI for stacked row housing, for any units considered to be stacked row housing, providers should use the apartment MRI.
Toronto  District Rent District Codes Apartment Average Rent (Row)Townhouse Average Rent
2021 Market Rent Index 2021 Market Rent Index
Table 3 – 2021 Toronto Market Rent Indices (MRI)
Toronto Zone 1 – Former City of Toronto (Central) M1A1 0 % 0 %
Toronto Zone 2 – Former City of Toronto (East) M1A2 -4.3 % 0 %
Toronto Zone 3 – Former City of Toronto (North) M1A3 0 % 0 %
Toronto Zone 4 – Former City of Toronto (West) M1A4 0 % 0 %
Toronto Zone 5 – Etobicoke (South) M1C1 0 % 0 %
Toronto Zone 6 – Etobicoke (Central) M1C2 0 % -0.5 %
Toronto Zone 7 – Etobicoke (North) M1C3 0 % 0 %
Toronto Zone 8 – York M1F 0 % 0 %
Toronto Zone 9 – East York M1B 0 % 0 %
Toronto Zone 10 – Scarborough   (Central) M1E1 0 % 0 %
Toronto Zone 11 – Scarborough   (North) M1E2 0 % 0 %
Toronto Zone 12 – Scarborough (East) M1E3 0 % 0 %
Toronto Zone 13 – North York   (Southeast) M1D1 0 % 0 %
Toronto Zone 14 – North York   (Northeast) M1D2 0 % -2.3 %
Toronto Zone 15 – North York   (Southwest) M1D3 0 % 0 %
Toronto Zone 16 – North York (North Central) M1D5 0 % 0 %
Toronto Zone 17 – North York   (Northwest) M1D4 0 % 0 %

Actions required

All Market and Rent-Geared-to-Income, Section 78 Housing Providers must use the indices indicated in Tables 1, 2 and 3 to calculate the indicated cost items and revenues, as well as their operating and RGI subsidies for their fiscal year beginning in 2021.



If you have any questions, please contact your Housing Consultant