Tenant Tips and Housing Considerations

Tenant Tips

Both Tenants and Landlords have many rights and responsibilities to the property and each other. Often your lease agreement will explain your rights and responsibilities as a tenant so be sure to read it thoroughly. For more detailed information, read the Landlord Tenant Board FAQ, the Residential Tenancies Act, or contact your Off-Campus Living Advisor. Common tenant rights applicable to students include:

  • Your landlord must give you twenty-four hours notice if they or a representative wish to enter the unit. Without twenty-four hours notice, you have the right to decline them entry into the property. This does not apply to emergency situations nor once you have given your sixty-days notice to vacate for showings, though a landlord must make a reasonable attempt to notify you before showings. 
  • You are not required to sign a Termination Agreement or new lease with your landlord, unless they are a member of the Landlord Contract Program. A termination agreement signed in bad faith is deemed unenforceable.  

  • Unless your landlord is registered in the Landlord Contract Program, you are not required to notify them of your intentions to sign a new lease or move out until a minimum of sixty days before the end of your lease date.  

  • You are not required to move out at the end of your lease agreement. In Ontario, all lease agreements roll over into a month-to-month tenancy unless you provide your landlord with a minimum of sixty-days' notice of your intentions to vacate, or a new lease agreement is signed. 
  • Rent increases can only be applied after one year of tenancy and an Ontario N1 form must be submitted to the tenants ninety days before the increase is to come into effect. The landlord may only increase the rent by the provincial mandated percentage. 

  • Landlords cannot ask for or collect security deposits in Ontario. Your landlord may ask for a rental deposit (i.e., first and last months’ rent) but that can only be applied to rent and cannot be used for anything else. 

Keep in mind these are just a few examples; it is encouraged that you read up about your rights and responsibilities as a tenant in Ontario in further detail by connecting to the Landlord Tenant Board or the Residential Tenancies Act.  

The Off-Campus Living Advisor (OCLA) provides guidance and assistance in navigating off-campus living on a case-by-case basis. Offering confidential one-on-one and group sessions to specifically address issues or questions about the Kingston rental market, tenant and landlord rights and relations, housing fraud, and within the student community. The OCLA supports a broad range of students including undergraduate, graduate, domestic, and international while collaborating with key stakeholders within the University and the greater Kingston community. The advisor can assist with any matter relating to off-campus living including; 

Navigating the Kingston rental market, housing search resources and tips, choosing housemates, application assistance and lease review, issues with landlords and/or housemates, tenant and landlord rights and responsibilities, spotting and avoiding housing fraud, City of Kingston services and processes 

Off-Campus Living Advisor

Visit the OCLA website for more information about tenant rights and responsibilities, off-campus housing, and moving resources.

Queen's Legal Aid

Visit the Queen's Legal Aid Website if you are in need of legal advice or representation.