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How (and When) Can a Tenant Give Notice to Vacate?

As a tenant in Ontario, it's important to understand your obligations when it comes to giving notice to vacate your rental unit. Failure to give proper notice can result in financial penalties and other legal consequences.


Under the Residential Tenancies Act (RTA) in Ontario, tenants are required to provide written notice to their landlord if they plan to vacate the rental unit. The notice must be given at least 60 days before the end of the rental term or lease, and must specify the date on which the tenant plans to vacate the unit.


If a tenant fails to provide proper notice, they may be responsible for paying rent for the entire term of the lease or rental agreement, even if they have already moved out. This can result in significant financial penalties for the tenant, and may damage their credit rating if the rent owed is sent to collections.


It's important to note that tenants must also give notice if they wish to terminate their lease early. In this case, the tenant must provide written notice to the landlord and may be required to pay a fee or provide compensation to the landlord for any losses incurred as a result of the early termination. When giving notice to vacate, it's important to ensure that the notice is delivered in the proper manner.

If a tenant is unable to deliver notice in the proper manner, they should make every effort to contact the landlord and provide notice verbally. In this case, it's recommended that the tenant follow up with a written notice as soon as possible.


It's important to keep in mind that notice to vacate does not release the tenant from their obligations under the lease or rental agreement. For example, the tenant may still be responsible for paying rent, and may be required to leave the unit in a clean and undamaged condition.


In summary, tenants in Ontario have a legal obligation to give notice to their landlord if they plan to vacate the rental unit. Failure to give proper notice can result in significant financial penalties and other legal consequences. When giving notice, tenants should ensure that the notice is delivered in the proper manner and that they are aware of any other obligations that they may have under the lease or rental agreement. By fulfilling their obligations regarding notice to vacate, tenants can maintain a positive relationship with their landlord and avoid unnecessary disputes.




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