Before you actually sign either a lease or a flat sharing agreement, you must be aware that both types of contracts have serious legal implications.
If you have any doubts about the procedure, we strongly recommend you speak with the Régie du logement - the Government of Québec’s Rental Board that structures precisely Landlord-Renter relationships. HEC Montréal shall not be liable for leases or agreements signed by students.
Bookstores sell the official lease document in either French or English that is identified with the Régie du Logement logo. Québec Law requires that this document be drawn up in French unless the parties agree otherwise.
Be aware that in Montreal, it is extremely difficult to negotiate a Lease with duration of less than 12 months. If you need to move in before the first of the month you will normally be required to pay for an additional full month and similarly if you leave in the middle of a month, you will generally be required to pay for the full month. You may negotiate an early move-in date if the apartment is free earlier (usually for a small surcharge).
It is illegal for the landlord to require this information.The name of your bank branch and their phone number should be sufficient.
The banking history investigation that the landlord will request to confirm that you are solvent usually takes two days.
You must first contact the landlord to confirm that you are still being considered for the apartment and that you are first in line before you proceed. Be absolutely certain that he agrees to cancel your application before filling out an application with the second landlord.
The following information must be written onto the official Régie du Logement lease form:
Once you have signed a lease, you are responsible for it for the full duration of the contract. You may however try to negotiate a deal with the landlord or transfer it to another person (with the landlord’s approval).
Usually right away after signing, certainly before you move-in. If this is not the case, contact the landlord immediately. It is illegal for a landlord to refuse to provide the tenant with a copy of his lease contract.
In Canada, a verbal agreement is as valid as a signed agreement. Any landlord who has contracted a verbal agreement with a tenant should provide him with a written confirmation within 10 days. The document called “Mandatory Writing” is available from the Régie.Even though you may have certain rights as per the Régie du Logement rules without a signed lease – WE STRONGLY ENCOURAGE YOU TO SIGN AN OFFICIAL LEASE ON THE APPOINTED FORM.
It is not customary for room boarders to sign an official lease for this type of rental. It is however highly recommended that you sign a written contract: a formal letter with all of the pertinent information (price, duration, description of the location and access to the house, included services, etc).
Must I advise my landlord that I wish to renew for another term (for another year)?
A Lease in Québec is automatically renewed for the same duration UNLESS you advise in writing that you are leaving. It is illegal for your landlord to increase your rent, or terminate it before the lease expiration date.
|Lease duration||Lead-time that the Landlord must respect if he wishes to make changes to the Lease contract||Written Answer from the Renter||Régie du logement|
|12 months or more||3 to 6 months before the termination date|
You must reply to the landlord within one Month of the change notification, if:
- you wish to leave;
- you refuse the increase and/or modifications requested by the Landlord.
Failure to reply means that you accept the changes and will stay for another term.
Your landlord may, within one month of your refusal to accept the changed lease conditions, apply to the Régie to get the terms of the lease decided by the Court.
Otherwise, the previous lease conditions remain in effect.
Beware that the Court’s decision is FINAL you must accept the rent increase set by the Régie; you will not have the option to leave.
|< 12 months||1 to 2 months before the termination date|
|Undetermined duration||1 to 2 months before the changes are to take effect|
10 to 20 days before the changes are to take effect
It is NOT possible to terminate a lease before it expires. Be aware that your lease is automatically renewed for another year unless you react in time. If you do not wish to renew it, you must advise him within the legal lead-times. However if you wish to leave early, you may try to sublet or transfer your lease to someone else (the landlord must agree to this if the offer is reasonable).
|Legal lead-time for the written notification that you will not renew your lease.|
|Lease duration||If you haven’t received a written change notification||If you have received a written change notification|
|12 months or more||3 to 6 months prior to the lease termination date||Within 1 month of receiving the change notification|
|< 12 months||1 to 2 months prior to the lease termination date|
1 to 2 months prior to the proposed dated of departure
Subletting an apartment means you let someone stay in your place temporarily. For example, a student might sublet for the summer months. Normally this option is used only if you are planning to move back into your place later on. This option is best if you are leaving for a short period and want to avoid paying for an empty apartment. Remember that from a legal point of view, you remain fully responsible for the lease and the apartment. You retain your right to return to the apartment when the subletting agreement ends. If you plan to leave your apartment permanently, it is preferable that you transfer your lease to someone else.
You must be aware that you remain fully responsible for the apartment, for damages as well as the rent payments if you simply sublet your apartment.
You retain all rights and obligations for the apartment even if you don’t sublet and leave the apartment empty. You remain responsible for damages and rent payments until the lease expires. In case of non payment of your rent, you may face legal proceedings. If you transfer your lease, you are released from your lease and its obligations.