What are my rights as a landlord?

In Ontario, the Residential Tenancies Act (RTA) gives certain rights and responsibilities to landlords. The RTA applies to most rental situations.

NOTE: Due to the COVID-19 crisis there are special temporary rental rules that apply. Read about the Renting Changes on the Ontario.ca page.

Choosing a Tenant

You have the right to choose a tenant using income information, credit checks, credit references, rental history, guarantees, and similar business practices as prescribed in the Ontario Human Rights Code regulations.

You cannot select or refuse tenants based on race, place of origin, ethnic origin, religion, sex, age, sexual orientation, marital status, family status (e.g. children) or disability.

After the Tenant Moves In

While a tenant is renting from you, these are some of your most important rights:

  • Collection of Rent Deposit: When you and the tenant sign the lease or tenancy agreement, you may collect a rent deposit. The maximum amount of this deposit is the same as the rent for 1 rental period (for example, 1 month or 1 week).
  • Collection of Rent: You are entitled to collect rent, in full, on the day that it is due.
  • Entry to the Rental Unit: You may enter the rental home in order to complete maintenance or repairs, to show the unit to a potential tenant, or in an emergency. However, you must follow certain entry guidelines.
  • Increase of Rent: You can increase the rent once in a 12-month period. However, you must follow rent increase guidelines.
  • Eviction of Tenants: In some situations, you can evict a tenant. If you give your tenant(s) a notice that you want them to leave, and they do not agree, you have the right to file an application and have a hearing with the Landlord and Tenant Board.

You can contact a legal clinic or housing help centre for more information. To find help in your area, go to Services Near Me.

As a landlord, you also have responsibilities. Please read What are my responsibilities as a landlord? to find out more.

For More Information

  • Landlord's Self-Help Centre - A community legal clinic that provides information, advice and referrals to landlords.
  • Navigate Tribunals Ontario - With this online tool from the Landlord and Tenant Board you can customize your search to access resources on your rights and responsibilities. The tool is designated to help you navigate the rules set out by the Landlord and Tenant Boa
  • Landlord and Tenant Board - A tribunal that provides information about the Residential Tenancies Act (RTA) and resolves disputes between most residential landlords and tenants.
  • CLEO - Housing Law - Clear language publications on the rights of tenants in rental housing. From Community Legal Education Ontario (CLEO).
  • Human Rights in Housing - Information for landlords about human rights in relation to housing and accommodating tenants' needs. From the Ontario Human Rights Comission (OHRC).
Last updated: June 8, 2021 4001271