Ontario's new 'easy-to-understand' rental lease now in effect

May 1 2018, 9:02 pm

Ontario’s “simple” rental agreement that’s mandatory for private residential leases is now in effect across the province.

On Tuesday morning, Premier Kathleen Wynne was at Charles Hastings Co-Op Housing Inc. to explain how the government’s new standard lease will help both tenants and landlords understand their rights and responsibilities and avoid any potential disputes.

Now, any leases signed on or after April 30, most landlords are required to use the new standard rental lease, which provides an easy to understand template to gather basic information.

This includes things like names and addresses, the total rent and when it is due, and any rules or conditions about the rental unit or building.

The lease applies to all types of residential units, including single and semi-detached houses, apartment buildings, rented condominiums and secondary units (such as basement apartments).

The new lease will reduce the use of illegal terms and potential misunderstandings caused by verbal tenancy agreements, making it easier for landlords to conduct their business and for tenants to understand their rights and responsibilities.

Now when a renter fills out a lease, they won’t be bombarded with rental jargon they don’t understand, as the new lease has simple-to-understand general information on the rights and responsibilities of renting in Ontario

“We want everyone in Ontario to understand what can and cannot be said in a residential lease. This includes making the lease accessible to both tenants and landlords, as well as those whose first language is not English or French,” said Peter Milczyn, Minister of Housing, in a statement.

If a landlord doesn’t use the standard lease for tenancies that are entered into on or after April 30, 2018, renters are entitled to ask for one.

If the landlord doesn’t provide it within 21 days, the tenant can withhold one month’s rent.

The standard lease guide is available in 23 languages, including English and French.

The new mandatory lease will ensure that more Ontario residents understand their rights and what they are agreeing to when they sign a new lease.

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