Private seniors’ residences are a type of rental housing for independent and semi-independent seniors. They offer personal care and assistance. They are privately owned and operated but must meet standards of quality and safety.
How to Apply
Apply directly to the residence you want. The government website has a list of certified private seniors’ residences (French only).
The residence can evaluate you, if you agree, to ensure its services meet your needs. You might be refused if you need care it doesn’t offer.
Once the residence accepts you, you sign a lease. A lease is the legal agreement you have with the residence that says what you and the residence must do. To learn about the responsibilities of landlords and tenants, see our website section Renting.
Choosing Your Services
Before signing the lease, the residence must give you a list of the personal care and assistance services it offers and their cost. Here are examples:
- help to dress, bathe, get around and take medication
- nursing care
You choose the services you want to include in your lease, and the cost becomes part of you monthly rent.
If you want personal services that are not in your lease, you pay for them only when you use them, but the residence can change the cost at any time.
The residence might include some general services with your unit, such as heating or internet access.
Signing the Lease
The residence must give you these documents:
- the lease in the form approved by the government
- a document called Schedule 6 which includes these things:
- general services included in with your unit
- personal care and assistance services you chose to include in your lease
- your total monthly rent (basic rent plus cost of personal services)
- the building rules, for example, rules for using common areas
Each month, you pay the total monthly rent set out in the lease.
When it’s time to renew your lease, the residence might want to increase the rent or cost of personal services included in your lease. The residence must send you a written notice. You can refuse the change in writing within 30 days of receiving the notice. To learn more, see our article Renewing a Residential Lease and Rent Increases.
Quality and Safety Standards
The government sets quality and safety standards the residence must meet, such as providing space to receive visitors in private, treating residents with respect, doing housekeeping, installing call-for-help systems and ensuring the staff are qualified.
The government can inspect the residence at any time. You can get information about the residence and check whether it is certified on the government website (French only).
You have basic rights, including the right to be treated with dignity, respect for your privacy and live in a clean, safe environment.
The residence must give you a copy of its code of ethics that spells out the conduct expected of staff toward residents.
If you have a problem with a private seniors’ residence, first speak to the person in charge at the residence. If your residence has a residents’ committee, you can also speak to the committee. If this doesn’t solve the situation, you can take further steps.
For problems about your lease, such as rent increases, contact the Régie du logement (rental board).
For problems about the quality of services, contact the service quality and complaints commissioner for your area.
This article explains in a general way the law that applies in Quebec. This article is not a legal opinion or legal advice. To find out the specific rules for your situation, consult a lawyer or notary.