Residential Tenancy Agreement The Normal Ontario Lease
In Ontario, a standard lease agreement is a legally binding contract between a landlord and a tenant that sets out the rules of the rental agreement. Most residential leases signed in Ontario after April 30, 2018, are required to use the standard lease form.
The standard lease includes information on the parties involved in the agreement, the rental unit and its address, contact information for the landlord, the terms of the lease, the amount of rent to be paid and any additional charges, rent discounts and deposits, key deposits, smoking regulations, requirements for tenants’ insurance, rules for modifying the rental unit, responsibilities for repairs and maintenance, provisions for transferring or subleasing the unit, and any additional terms that may be agreed upon by the landlord and tenant.
Under the Ontario Human Rights Code, all individuals have the right to fair housing treatment without discrimination or harassment. The Residential Tenancies Act gives tenants rights and responsibilities, and the standard lease can’t get rid of any of those. Some rules, like those that say pets aren’t allowed or that charge deposits or fees without permission, are considered null and void and can’t be enforced. To keep a good and fair rental relationship, it’s important for both landlords and renters to understand and follow the terms of the standard lease agreement.
What is a standard lease Agreement in Ontario?
Most residential leases signed after April 30, 2018, have to use the standard lease.
Standard leases establish a contractual relationship between the landlord and tenant. This is also known as a residential rental agreement.
Under the Ontario Human Rights Code, all individuals have the right to fair housing treatment without discrimination or harassment. It is important to know that under the Residential Tenancies Act, a lease cannot eliminate a right or responsibility.
Standard Lease Terms
Parties to the contract
The landlord(s) and tenant(s) who are signing the tenancy agreement
This section describes the available rental space and its address. Also specifying parking spots. Condominium declarations, bylaws, and rules that are established by the landlord and must be accepted by the tenant.
The landlord’s address, where official notifications must be sent, requires the tenant to consent to receiving formal notices by e-mail and provides room for both the landlord and tenant’s e-mail addresses.
It is important to know that the end of an agreement does not mean the tenant has to move out or sign a new agreement in order to stay. The rules of the agreement will still apply, and the tenant still has the right to stay as per the agreement, i.e., for a fixed term, a monthly tenancy, a weekly tenancy, or a daily tenancy.
This segment specifies the rent for the unit and any other charges like parking, storage lockers, a future rent increase, if any, hydro, heating, water, and Internet.
If the landlord offers any rent discount, that must be put in writing.
This segment specifies that the landlord and tenant should agree to pay the first and last month’s rent in advance, and the rent deposit cannot be used as a damage deposit.
In this section, the landlord and tenant determine if and how much a key deposit is necessary.
According to provincial law, smoking is not allowed in any of the building’s common indoor areas, but it is allowed in rental units. The landlord and tenant can agree on smoking regulations for the rental property.
Both the landlord and tenant can agree on whether or not the tenant is required to have liability insurance. If the landlord requests evidence of coverage, the tenant is responsible for providing it prior to moving in.
Modifications to the rental unit
This segment specifies that tenants may install ornamental items such as pictures and window treatments but must obtain written permission from the landlord before making any further modifications to the rental property.
Repairs and maintenance
This sement specifies that it is the landlord’s responsibility to take care of the rental unit and property, while it is the tenant’s job to fix or pay for any damage caused by the tenant or their guests.
The tenant is accountable for maintaining a tidy living space. If the landlord and tenant desire to stipulate extra terms in writing, they can do so.
Transfer and sublease
This segment specifies that the tenant needs the landlord’s permission to give the unit to someone else or sublease. The landlord must respond in a reasonable amount of time and must give a good explanation for saying no.
The landlord and tenant may agree to additional, tenancy-specific conditions. If accepted, these extra rules or conditions must be documented in writing.
That Prohibit Pets, Prohibit Visitors, Roommates, or Extra Tenants, Demand the tenant to pay deposits, Fees, or Penalties that are not authorized under the act for example, damage or pet deposits, interest on rent arrears, and Require the tenant to pay for all or part of repairs that are the obligation of the landlord are null and invalid and unenforceable.
If pets are permitted on the premises, the terms and conditions for doing so should be specified in the agreement.
Before agreeing to any further arrangements, the landlord and tenant may choose to consult a lawyer.
All changes to the Agreement must be written down and signed by both sides.
Both the landlord and tenant agree to abide by the agreement’s conditions. Each tenant is accountable for all tenant duties, including the full amount of rent if there are more than one tenants.
If both parties agree, either the landlord or the tenant may sign the lease electronically.
The landlord must provide the tenant with a copy of the agreement within 21 days of the tenant’s signature.
Before signing the lease, you should read it carefully to ensure that you are aware of all the terms and conditions of your new property.
If the tenant has not paid rent, the landlord cannot shut off a vital service like heat, electricity, water, etc. or take the tenant’s personal property.
The tenant cannot withhold rent from the landlord. However, the tenant can apply to the landlord and tenant board if the landlord fails to meet maintenance responsibilities.
Lease agreements typically run 12 months for 5–10 years. 30-day rental agreements are common. Residential leases frequently utilise the term rent.
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