The Residential Tenancies Act refers to a landlord and tenant relationship as a rental agreement. The agreement can be oral or written and is a legal binding contract between the parties. It may be simple and brief, or it may contain extra conditions or obligations. Any and all changes or additions to a verbal or written rental agreement should always be noted in writing. It is important to note that any conditions or obligations in a rental agreement are not valid if they contravene the Residential Tenancies Act.
Types of Rental Agreements
There are three types of rental agreements:
- a fixed term of not less than 6 months and not more than 12 months.
The type of rental agreement will determine when the rent is due and the minimum notice of termination to be given by the landlord or tenant.
The Act states:
- Premises rented for a period less than a week is a week-to-week rental agreement.
- Premises rented for a period greater than a week and less than a month is a month-to-month rental agreement.
- Premises rented for a period that is more than a week and less than 6 months is a month-to-month rental agreement.
Rental Agreements and the Residential Tenancies Act
- The landlord shall give the tenant a duplicate copy of the rental agreement within 10 days after the date of signing by all parties. If the landlord fails to do this, the tenant is not obligated to pay rent until the tenant receives a copy of the rental agreement. However, any rent already paid may be kept by the landlord.
- The landlord shall give the tenant a copy of the Residential Tenancies Act. Without cost to the tenant, a landlord has to provide a copy of the Act to the tenant upon entering into a Rental Agreement.
Reference - Sections 5 and 6 of the Residential Tenancies Act
Rental Premises Condition Report Form
This is a form (54 KB) completed, signed and dated by the tenant and landlord to show the condition of the residential premises at the beginning and end of the rental agreement.
- Both landlords and tenants find that an inspection report is in their best interests.
- A tenant can use it to show there were damages before the tenant moved in.
- A landlord can use it to show damages which were not there before the tenant moved in.
- The premises should be vacant during an incoming and outgoing inspection, unless the landlord and tenant agree otherwise.
- The landlord and tenant should inspect the premises together and write down any damages such as holes, scratches and burns.
- The landlord and tenant should sign and keep a copy of the report.
- If a landlord or tenant does not want to participate in an inspection report, the landlord or tenant should complete the inspection report, preferably with a witness, and provide a copy to the other party.
- Many landlords and tenants take pictures of the conditions in the unit or videotape them at the start and at the end of the tenancy.
- To obtain a Rental Premises Condition Report Form contact your nearest Residential Tenancies Office or Government Service Centre.
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