Landlords on P.E.I. have asked the Island Regulatory and Appeals Commission to let them increase rents next year from seven to 30 per cent.

The requests came in the form of written submissions to IRAC. Twila Whalen, director of residential rental property, told CBC News Tuesday this has been a busy year for submissions. Most years there are no more than five, but this year more than 30 have been received, 18 from landlords and 13 from or on behalf of tenants.

Landlords say they need the increase to cover the cost of heating oil. Whalen said some tenants are worried they'll be hit with a big increase all at once.

"Some of the tenants were actually requesting that if there's going to be a large rent increase that it would be divided between two years or three years, not make it all at once," said Whalen.

"That would be understandable, being that their increase in income would never cover anything, for example, like a 10 or 20 per cent increase."

IRAC will decide by the end of the month how much rents can go up as of Jan. 1. The increase last year was capped at one per cent.