renting in Manitoba

Do I need to sign a lease or tenancy agreement?

No.  However, if the agreement is a written one, both tenant and landlord must sign it and the landlord must give the tenant a copy of the agreement within 21 days after the tenant has signed it. Tenants who haven’t received a copy of their lease may contact the Residential Tenancies Branch – (Winnipeg Office):

  • Telephone: (204) 945-2476
    Toll Free in Manitoba: 1-800-782-8403
    FAX: (204) 945-6273

Types of rental periods, which determine how long you can stay in the apartment:

  • Periodic Lease: the rental period can relate to a calendar week, month, or year
  • Fixed Term Lease: lease of predetermined period

Is a signed move in/move out condition report required?

No, unless the landlord or tenant ask for one to be done. However, it is recommended that a landlord and tenant complete a condition report together at the beginning and end of a tenancy. The Residential Tenancies Branch can provide a Rental Unit Condition Report form or another checklist may be used.

May the landlord request a security deposit?

Yes, but there are regulations:

  • The deposit must be equivalent to no more than ½ of the first month’s rent
  • The security deposit is held by the landlord. If the landlord has no claims against the security deposit and accrued interest, it must be returned to the tenant within 14 days of the end of the tenancy. If a claim is made, the landlord is required to notify the tenant of the claim within 28 days.
  • A landlord is required to forward a security deposit or rent overpayment to the Residential Tenancies Branch if they are unable to return it directly to the tenant. Tenants may then apply to the province for their money.
  • The government sets the interest rate to be paid.

May the landlord request key money?

No. Requiring key money is illegal.

May the landlord request post-dated cheques?

Yes, but tenants are not obliged to provide them.

May a landlord refuse to rent to a tenant who has pets or smokes?