Leases are a binding contract between a tenant and a landlord and breaking a lease is a breach of this contract. Despite this breach, you may find yourself with a valid reason for needing to break your lease – such as moving to another city.

If you are in this situation, we want to help you try to avoid – or at least minimize- penalties from your landlord. The best way for you to do this is to:

  • Familiarize yourself with your province’s necessary legal requirements to terminate a lease.
  • Know whether you have a “Fixed” or “Periodic” term lease. A Fixed Term is a lease with a specified end, while a Periodic Term is a lease that runs month-to-month, week-to-week or other pre-determined time.
  • Be sure to provide your landlord with as much notice as possible.
  • Wherever permissible offer to help finding a replacement tenant.

Each province has different regulations pertaining to leases or tenant agreements, and how to cancel a lease.


  • You can give notice during a fixed term lease, provided that the date of termination is not any earlier than the last day of tenancy.
  • It is the responsibility of the landlord and tenant to renegotiate terms or terminate the lease. If an agreement is not reached by the time the lease expires, the tenancy automatically becomes a month-to-month arrangement.
  • If you are on a daily or weekly tenancy arrangement, you are required to provide 28 days written notice to terminate your arrangement.
  • Requests to sublet are permitted and the landlord must approve or disapprove in writing.

For additional details, you can also refer to Ontario’s rental board website.
Landlord and Tenant Board
Toronto South Regional Office
79 St. Clair Avenue East, Suite 212
Toronto, Ontario
M4T 1M6
Tel.: 416-645-8080
Fax: 416-326-9838
Toll-free: 1-888-332-3234 (within Ontario)
Visit the Web site link above to see the complete listing of regional offices

Also check out our article How to cancel my lease that deals with detailed steps to follow.