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If elected, the Saskatchewan NDP has promised to cap rent increases and increase the stock of affordable housing. ((iStock))

Saskatchewan NDP Leader Dwain Lingenfelter has pledged the party will implement rent controls if elected.

Lingenfelter said an NDP government would introduce changes to the Residential Tenancies Act to protect Saskatchewan families from unreasonable hikes in their monthly rent.

Lingenfelter said the high cost of housing and rent is a major issue that affects people throughout the province.

"Having heard the stories of families forced to choose between paying the monthly rent and buying winter boots and coats for their kids, we believe the time for action is now," he said.

"Other provinces have already moved to models of rent control that make sense in the 21st Century, and the vast majority of Canadians live under some form of rent control."

Shantelle Carter, who was at Lingenfelter's announcement on Tuesday morning, began renting a two-bedroom apartment in Regina five years ago.   "And then [the rent] went from $639 to $669 to $744 to $819 to $969," she said.

"By the time we left it was $1,000 [each month] over three short years."

Lingenfelter said his party would also move to increase the supply of rental units and affordable housing in the province.

However, Saskatchewan Party Justice Minister Don Morgan doesn't like the idea of rent control. He said rent increase caps keeps properties off the market and deter new construction.

Saskatchewan's provincial election is slated for Nov. 7.