As more than 600,000 university and college students across the province prepare to go back to school, many students will be renting housing off-campus for the first time. Ontario is reminding students about their rights and responsibilities as tenants.
The province’s Residential Tenancies Act outlines landlord and tenant obligations for most residential properties in the province, and includes rules about:
- How to terminate a lease
- When rent can be increased
- Repairs to rental units
- Rent receipts and deposits, subletting, having pets and changing locks
“Searching for housing off-campus can be daunting for students, especially those who are renting for the first time. Knowing your rights and responsibilities as a tenant can make the process easier, protect you from rental disputes, and allow you to keep focused on what matters most – growing your talents and skills through postsecondary education.” — Chris Ballard, Minister of Housing
To help your rental experience go as smoothly as possible:
- Be aware of your rights and responsibilities as a tenant
- Keep lines of communication open with your landlord to minimize disagreements
- Ask your landlord to agree to rental terms in writing
- Always keep copies of documents that you provide to your landlord
If you are unable to resolve a rental issue with your landlord, you can contact the Landlord and Tenant Board for more information. If you are facing immediate, serious issues such as an illegal eviction or disconnection of vital services, you can also contact the ministry’s Rental Housing Enforcement Unit.