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.

  • No notice is required to end a fixed term lease. A fixed term lease expires automatically at the end of the period of time defined in the lease.
  • If you have a month-to-month lease, you will have to provide one month’s written notice.
  • Upon termination of your lease, the security deposit, if applicable, plus interest is due to you within 10 days of your vacating the rental unit.
  • Subletting is permitted. Your landlord has 14 days to answer your request for a sublet.
  • Alberta has special provisions for rental mobile home sites. Please refer to the provinces web site for those specifics.

For additional details, you can also refer to Alberta’s rental board website.

Service Alberta
3rd Floor
44 Capital Boulevard
10044 – 108 Street
Edmonton, AB
T5J 5E6
See Web site for area Landlord and Tenant Advisory Board locations.

Consumer Contact Centre:
1-877-427-4088 (Outside Edmonton, Alberta only)
780-427-4088 (Edmonton and area)

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