Tenants worry as Dartmouth apartment complex goes up for sale
Tenants living in a rental community in Dartmouth, N.S. are worried that they may be forced out after learning the entire complex is up for sale.
Maggie MacInnis experienced homelessness before moving into Ocean Breeze Village three-and-a-half years ago.
“I came from an amazing place, Bryony House for Homeless Women and Children, but my kids don’t deserve to have to do those types of things ever again,” says MacInnis.
After learning Ocean Breeze Village has been put up for sale, MacInnis is worried that she and others won’t have anywhere to go if the new owners have their own places for the 30 acre site.
“My concern is that all of these people displaced at the same time, are going to be scrambling for a place to live, when right now at this point, there’s not one single place we could apply for as a family of four,” says MacInnis.
“I really love the place,” says tenant Leah Croft. “There’s lots of green space, trees around, playgrounds for kids.”
Elia Corporation is the current owner of the property. Croft says the company has a history of moderate, and reasonable rent increases, and that her rent went up by 2 per cent this year, but she’s concerned of the uncertainty of what could happen to her rent going forward.
“Everybody’s scared, we just don’t know what’s going on,” says Croft.
Residents say they still haven’t heard anything official about the potential sale from Elia Corporation, but they are prepared to fight for their homes if the property is sold.
“The neighbours here are ready to organize and not give up easily, because affordable housing in this province is barely accessible,” says tenant Celine Porcheron.
A number of tenants say they have already written to N.S. Premier Tim Houston to voice their concerns.
Susan LeBlanc, MLA for Dartmouth North, posted to the Nova Scotia NDP’s twitter account on Thursday, acknowledging that the property is on the market and asking for answers from N.S. Housing Minister John Lohr.
On-site management at Ocean Breeze Village said they heard about the sale from residents, but haven’t received official word from head office. CTV Atlantic reached out to the property owner, but their offices were closed.