Landlord and Tenant Rights
Alberta’s Residential Tenancies Act (RTA) gives landlords and tenants specific rights. The RTA imposes certain obligations on landlords and tenants as well. Under the RTA, tenancy agreements can be verbal, implied or in writing. Regardless of the form of the agreement, landlord and tenant rights apply to all tenancy agreements.
The basic rights of the tenant include the right to vacant possession of the property on the day that the tenancy begins and the right to a rental property that meets the minimum provincial health and safety standards for housing under Alberta’s Public Health Act (PHA).
The following is a list of additional tenant rights. If a landlord breaches any of these rights, the tenant can apply to the court or to the Residential Tenancy Dispute Resolution Service (RTDRS) for any of the following: an order terminating the tenancy, recovery of damages resulting from the landlord’s breach, a reduction in rent to the extent that the landlord’s breach has deprived the tenant’s benefit of the use or enjoyment of the property and compensation for the cost of performing the landlord’s obligations.
- Basic Tenant Rights:
- The right to a copy of signed tenancy agreement and the move-in and move-out inspection report.
- The right to 24 hours written notice that the landlord will be entering the property. The landlord’s entry must be between 8am and 8pm and cannot be on a holiday or on the tenant’s day of religious worship. The landlord must provide written notice of entry that is signed, states the date and time of the entry and the reason for the entry.
- The right to 14 days notice of termination of the tenancy for non-payment of rent and the right to have the tenancy continue by paying the rental arrears owning before the expiry of the notice period.
- The right to make a complaint or statement under the RTA and/or the PHA without fear that their tenancy will be terminated or fear of any other retaliation from the landlord.
- Tenant’s Rights Regarding Security Deposits:
- The right to receive either the full security deposit back or the balance of it after deductions are made by the landlord. The tenant must receive this within 10 days from the date they give up possession of the property.
- The landlord cannot deduct anything from the security deposit for the normal wear and tear of the property. The landlord cannot make any deductions to the deposit if a proper move-in inspection was not given to the tenant.
- If deductions are made from the security deposit, the right to receive a statement of account from the landlord showing the amount of the deposit deducted.
- Sublease Agreements
- The right to enter into a sublease agreement upon the written consent of the landlord. The landlord must not refuse a sublease unless there are reasonable grounds to do so.
The following is a list of landlord rights under the RTA. If any of these rights are breached, the landlord can 1) terminate the tenancy by serving the tenant with at least 14 days written notice, 2) apply to the court or to the Residential Tenancy Dispute Resolution Service (RTDRS) for recovery of arrears from the tenant and 3) recover from the tenant damages resulting from the breach.
- Basic Landlord Rights:
- The right to receive payment of rent in full and on time each month and the right to recover rent arrears.
- The right to receive vacant possession of the premises at the end of the residential tenancy. The landlord can apply to the court or the RTDRS for 1) an order authorizing a civil enforcement agency to evict anyone occupying the premises, 2) compensation from the tenant for the use and occupation of the premises past the end of the tenancy and 3) damages from the tenant for damages resulting from the tenant’s breach.
- The right to not have any illegal acts occurring on the premises or the common areas.
- The right to order a person living in the premises who is not the tenant vacate the premises. The landlord must serve the tenant with written notice to vacate.
- The right to enter the property without the consent of the tenant, if 24 hours written notice is served on the tenant. The landlord can enter for the following reasons:
- to inspect the state of repair of the premises
- to make repairs
- for pest control, or to ensure that the standards of the property meet provincial health regulations
- to show the premises to prospective purchasers or tenants
- The right to change the locks or add to the locks of the property as long as a new key is made available to the tenant as soon as the change is made and the right to not have the tenant change or add to the locks without the landlord’s consent.
The lawyers at Kahane Law Office are happy to help with landlord and tenant issues. From acquisitions, dispositions, financing, lease drafting and disputes. We can help from start to finish.www.kahanelaw.com or email us firstname.lastname@example.org