As of April 30, 2018, the landlords must use the Residential Tenancy Agreement (Standard Form of Lease). The Tenancy Agreement contains terms that maximumly reflect the rules of the Residential Tenancies Act, 2006 (Act).
Moreover, if the landlord wants to include any terms that are inconsistent with the Act, those terms are either void or will not be enforced by the Landlord and Tenant Board.
However, what if there is no written tenancy agreement between the landlord and tenant? One of the most common reasons is that the tenant rented the unit long before April 30, 2018. Another common reason is that the parties simply did not know about the rules.
If there is no written tenancy agreement but both the landlord and tenant are responsible, this should not be a problem. However, If any issues arise between the landlord and tenant, the lack of a written tenancy agreement might cause some difficulties when you seek the protection of your legal rights. In such a case, it is necessary to consult with a legal professional.
It should be noted that you are not required to use this Tenancy Agreement if you are a roommate or an occupant of the rental unit. In this case, you are not covered by the Act, and consequently, the rules do not apply to you. Instead, the rules of contract law will govern the issues you may have with your “landlord”. You may still sign this Tenancy Agreement with your “landlord” as proof of your legal right for occupancy. However, for the best interest of you, we recommend that you sign a detailed written contract.
Last but not least, when any of the exceptions set out in section 5 of the Act applies, you shall not use this Tenancy Agreement form either.
Types of Tenancy Agreement
There are two types of tenancy agreements, fixed-term tenancy and non-fixed-term tenancy. A fixed-term tenancy can be in any length. A non-fixed-term tenancy can be monthly, bi-weekly, weekly, or even daily depending on how often the tenant pays the rent.
When a fixed-term tenancy ends, it does not necessarily mean the tenant has to move out. The Residential Tenancies Act, 2006 (RTA) provides that the fixed-term tenancy automatically becomes a non-fixed term tenancy if the tenant does not take any actions. The non-fixed term tenancy resumes the conditions in the fixed-term tenancy.
On the other hand, if the tenant wishes to move out at the end of the tenancy, the tenant shall follow the rules and provide proper notice to the landlord. In this case, the tenancy agreement is terminated at the end of the term.
Additionally, the landlord and tenant may enter another fixed-term tenancy after the first fixed-term tenancy. In this case, the new fixed-term tenancy is considered an independent tenancy agreement. Both parties may agree on new conditions.
If you are a landlord, you cannot terminate a fixed-term tenancy agreement simply because the term ends.