What tenants need to know about the law
You do not have to move out just because your lease has expired. Your tenancy continues until you or your landlord do something to end it.
If you want to move out, there are a few different ways to do this. Some of these are:
- you and your landlord can agree to end your tenancy,
- you can give your landlord notice (see Giving notice),
- you can find a new tenant to take over your place (see Assigning your place).
You may also have to move out if your landlord evicts you. Click here for important information about eviction.
If your tenancy agreement is for a fixed period of time, for example, a one-year lease, your landlord might give you a form to sign saying that you must choose between renewing your lease or moving out. But you do not have to choose either of these. If you do not choose either of them, your tenancy will automatically continue on a month-to-month basis. Sometimes this can be better, for example, if you know you want to stay past the end of the lease but you are not sure you want to stay for another full year.
If you want to move out, usually you must give written notice to your landlord. The Landlord and Tenant Board has a form for this called Form N9 – Tenant's Notice to End the Tenancy. Click here for information about contacting the Board. You do not have to use the form, but if you do, it will be easier to make sure you include all the information that is required.
Your notice must give the date you want your tenancy to end. This is called the "termination date". Most of the time, the termination date must be the last day of a rental period. Usually that is the day before your rent is due.
You must give the notice to your landlord a certain number of days before the termination date. If you pay your rent by the day or the week, you must give at least 28 days' notice. If you pay your rent by the month, you must give at least 60 days' notice.
If you have a tenancy agreement that is for a fixed period of time, for example, a one-year lease, you must give at least 60 days' notice and the termination date cannot be before the last day of the lease.
If you leave without giving proper notice, you might have to pay rent for some of the time after you move out. But your landlord must also try to find a new tenant to take over as soon as possible. You are not responsible for rent after a new tenant moves in.
You can also try to find a new tenant yourself. This is called "assigning" your place. When you assign your place, the new tenant takes over your tenancy agreement or lease. The rules about this are complicated, so try to get more information or advice first if you want to do this. In most types of rent-geared-to-income (RGI) or subsidized housing you cannot assign your tenancy.
Getting the Board to end your tenancy
If you want to move out because your landlord is not following the law or your tenancy agreement, you can apply to the Landlord and Tenant Board to let you move out early. For example, you could do this if your landlord will not repair something or is harassing you. Usually you have to prove that the problem is serious, and that you have given your landlord a reasonable chance to correct it.