Do I need to sign a lease or tenancy agreement?
No. A verbal agreement can still be binding. However, where a written rental agreement exists, there are a number of requirements:
- The landlord must provide the tenant with a full copy of that agreement within 21 days of the date that the agreement was signed.
- If the landlord does not provide the tenant with a copy of the written agreement, the tenant is not bound by any terms of that agreement that go above and beyond those already implied by the Rental of Residential Property Act, unless and until the landlord forwards a copy of the lease.
- For those entering into a written rental agreement or renewing a written rental agreement who do not sign a lease, all the provisions of the Rental of Residential Property Act and the standard agreement apply.
Types of rental periods, which determine how long you can stay in the apartment:
Leases must have a fixed term with a predetermined expiry date. Verbal or written month to month rental agreements and week to week rental agreements are also allowed.
Is a signed move in/move out condition report required?
No. A checklist is recommended but not required.
May the landlord request a security deposit?
Yes, but there are regulations:
- The security deposit cannot be greater than one week’s rent for a weekly tenancy or one month’s rent in any other circumstances.
- A landlord must request a security deposit on or before the date that the landlord and the tenant enter into the rental agreement.
- Interest is added to the security deposit each year at a rate that is set annually by a formula prescribed by legislation.
- When the tenant moves out of the residence, the landlord must either return the security deposit plus accrued interest to the tenant within ten days or serve the tenant with a notice stating why the security deposit is being retained.
- A landlord can retain the security deposit for cleaning, damages or rent owing.
- If a tenant receives a Notice of Intention to Retain security Deposit from the landlord and doesn’t agree with the landlord‘s reasons for keeping the security deposit, the tenant has 15 days to file an Application Re Determination of Security Deposit with the Director of Residential Rental Property.
- A tenant should provide the landlord with their forwarding address when they move out.
May the landlord request key money?
No, it is illegal for a landlord to require key money.
May the landlord request post-dated cheques?
Yes, landlords may request post-dated cheques, but there is no legal requirement for the tenant to provide them.
May a landlord refuse to rent to a tenant who has pets or smokes?