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Housing and Homelessness

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Quarterly Reporting Reviews For Staff of Housing Providers

Q. What are Quarterly Reporting Reviews?

A. Quarterly Reporting Reviews are a means of both reporting income and determining a monthly average for fluctuating income. The household declares earnings every three months, and the housing provider averages the earnings in order to re-calculate rent-geared-to-income (RGI) assistance. Quarterly Reporting Reviews replace all current methods used by housing providers to average income.


Q. Why are Quarterly Reporting Reviews being introduced?

A. Currently, housing providers average earnings in a number of different ways. This results in discrepancies in the way that RGI is calculated across the Region of Durham. Quarterly Reporting Reviews standardize the way in which earnings are averaged making calculations more consistent.


Q. Do all households need to report income quarterly?

A. No. Only households with regular but fluctuating earnings are required to report income every three months. These households include:

  • Employees who are paid at an hourly rate and who do not work the same number of hours from week to week
  • Salaried employees who receive frequent bonuses or gratuities
  • Temporary employees that work regularly

Q. What is the QRS and how is it completed?

A. The QRS, or Quarterly Reporting Statement, is a form that is used by the household to declare fluctuating earnings over a specified three month period - called the quarterly reporting period. The household enters the gross amounts of all payments received during this period.

The QRS must be completed in full and signed by all members of the household over the age of 16. Verification of all payments received during the quarterly reporting period must also be attached to the QRS when it is returned to the housing provider.


Q. Does the housing provider need to verify the earnings declared on the QRS?

A. Yes. The housing must verify all payments received during the quarterly reporting period. Earnings are normally verified by pay stubs; however, if the household does not receive pay stubs or has lost some pay stubs, they may submit a signed letter from their employer stating:

  • Name of employer
  • Gross amount of each payment received for the period
  • Dates of payments
  • Total gross year-to-date payments received
  • A contact name and telephone number

Q. I have a household that has fixed income and fluctuating earnings. Do I need to verify the fixed income for the Quarterly Reporting Review?

A. No. The fixed income only needs to be verified once a year at the time of the Annual Review of RGI Eligibility. This amount will not normally be adjusted for the Quarterly Reporting Review, and does not need to be re-verified.


Q. Why is an Annual Review of RGI Eligibility still required for households that complete Quarterly Reporting Reviews?

A. Quarterly Reporting Reviews are not a full review of RGI eligibility. Their purpose is to verify fluctuating earnings and determine if the average monthly amount used in RGI calculations is accurate.

At the Annual Review of RGI Eligibility, the housing provider must verify and review all household income, assets and eligibility requirements including occupancy standards. This is not normally done at the time of the Quarterly Reporting Reviews. However, housing providers are encouraged to synchronize changes as a result if the annual review with the nearest quarterly reporting change.


Q. Once the QRS is received, how are the earnings averaged?

A. In order to determine the average monthly earnings, the housing provider will:

  • Total all payments declared on the QRS as having been received during the quarterly reporting period.
  • Divide the total by the number of pay weeks in the period even if a payment was not received for every week.
  • Multiply this amount by 4.333

Q. How is RGI re-calculated during a Quarterly Reporting Review?

A. Once you have determined the average earnings, this new amount is used in the RGI calculations. During Quarterly Reporting Reviews, there is no need to review or adjust fixed income or imputed income amounts that are also used in the RGI calculation.


Q. Do I need to adjust imputed income during the Quarterly Reporting Review?

A. No. Imputed income is only reviewed and adjusted at the time of the Annual Update of RGI Eligibility.


Q. How are RGI changes implemented?

A. If the Quarterly Reporting Review results in an RGI change, the change is implemented as follows:

  • All RGI decreases take effect on the first day of the month following the due date for the QRS
  • RGI increases of $10 or more take effect on the first day of the second month following the due date for the QRS
  • RGI increases of less than $10 are not implemented

Q. Do I need to notify the tenant?

A. You only need to notify the tenant if there has been a change to the amount of the RGI. If the average earnings have changed, but the RGI amount remains the same (e.g. there is an increase of less than $10), the tenant is not notified.

However, the tenant must be issued a new QRS to complete for the following quarterly reporting period.


Q. Can the tenant request a Regional Review of the RGI change?

A. Yes. The tenant may request a Regional Review of any change in the amount of their RGI. In accordance with Directive 2004-01 Regional Review Process, the notice of decision must also advise that the tenant has the right to request a Regional Review.


Q. I have a tenant that lost their job at the end of the quarterly reporting period? Do they have to wait another three months before I can adjust RGI?

A. No, you can adjust the RGI right away because this is a significant and permanent change in earnings. Although the tenant may have had full earnings in the last quarter, you should adjust the RGI to reflect current zero earnings. The decrease in RGI would take effective on the first day of the month following the last date of pay. The cessation of earnings must also be verified.


Q. I have a tenant that worked more overtime than usual in the period just prior to our introducing Quarterly Reporting. His last reported earnings are almost twice what they are normally. Should I use this amount as the average earnings for the first quarterly reporting period?

A. No. The ongoing average amount of earnings should approximate the amount that the tenant is likely to receive over the next quarter. You can adjust the estimate to exclude the unusual overtime amounts.


Q. I have a tenant that just started a new job. How do I start Quarterly Reporting?

A. You will need to estimate the earnings for the first quarterly reporting period and notify the tenant of the new Quarterly Reporting requirements.

  • Verify the earnings. This will likely be an employer letter outlining the anticipated gross amount of pay, frequency of pay, date of first payment and contact name and telephone number
  • Determine when the tenant will receive their first pay. This month will be the first month of the quarterly reporting period
  • Notify the tenant that they will need to submit a QRS and their pay stubs every 3 months. Give the tenant the QRS indicating the first quarterly reporting period and when the QRS is due
  • Estimate the monthly average of earnings based on the verification letter.
  • Increase RGI to reflect average earnings effective the first day of the second month following the first date of pay
  • Follow up for the first QRS and earnings verification when it is due

Q. I have a tenant who works as a school bus driver but has no earnings in the summer. Should I have her complete Quarterly Reporting Reviews?

A. No. School bus drivers are seasonal workers. Their income should be averaged over the full calendar year.


Q. I have a tenant whose source of income changes form Ontario Works to Earnings to Employment Insurance quite frequently. Should he report income quarterly?

A. No. These households should not declare income quarterly. You may want them to report more frequently so that you can determine a reasonable average of their income.