This topic reviews the rights and responsibilities of both the landlord and the tenant when the tenant moves out of rented premises. Rented premises include among others, apartments, houses, duplexes and condominiums. The Alberta Residential Tenancies Act (the “Act”) contains the law with respect to residential tenancies in Alberta and it governs the rights and responsibilities of landlords and tenants of residential premises.
When you decide to move from your rented premises you may be required to give your landlord notice of your intention to terminate your tenancy. Whether you are required to provide your landlord with such a notice and the length of the notice period depend upon the type of tenancy you have.
If you have a fixed term tenancy, the tenancy or Agreement automatically ends on the last day of the fixed term and you are required to move out on or before that day. You are not required to provide your landlord with notice of your intention to move out on the last day of a fixed term tenancy. Similarly, your landlord is not required to provide you with advance notice of when your fixed term tenancy will end, and the landlord is entitled to expect you to vacate your rented premises no later than the last day of the fixed term. If you fail to move out by then, you will be in default under your Agreement and liable to the landlord for any loss or damages the landlord suffers as a result of your failure to move out when required. If you wish to have the landlord provide you with advance written notice that your Agreement will be ending before the last day of the fixed term tenancy, the landlord’s commitment to provide you with such notice should be included in the written Agreement.
If you have a fixed term tenancy, you are required to pay rent throughout the entire fixed term. If you wish to move out before the fixed term tenancy is over, you will still be required to pay rent until the end of the fixed term unless the landlord agrees to another arrangement. If the landlord does agree to another arrangement, ensure that the landlord’s agreement is documented in writing and signed by the landlord. The law requires the landlord to make reasonable efforts to rent the premises even if you break the lease, but if no tenant is found, you will probably have to pay the rent until the fixed term tenancy ends. If for some reason you are required to move from your premises before the end of a fixed term tenancy, with the landlord’s consent you may assign your interest under the Agreement or sublease the premises to someone else. Your landlord may not refuse consent unless the landlord has reasonable grounds for refusal. You will be held responsible for any breach of the Agreement by the person to whom you sublease the premises or assign your interest under the Agreement.
If you have a periodic tenancy and want to end the tenancy, you must provide your landlord with written notice of your intention to terminate the tenancy. Your notice must be signed by you or your agent, identify the premises, and state the date on which your tenancy is to terminate. The length of the notice period depends upon the time period you rent the premises for. For example: