Most apartment leases in Quebec end on June 30 of each year. Many tenants have already received a notice about renewing their leases in July 2017. But some tenants might have received a notice that the landlord wants to take back (repossess) the apartment or evict them.
What can you do if your landlord wants to raise the rent, repossess the apartment or evict you? What must you do if you want to move?
Rent Increases and Lease Renewals
To increase your rent, your landlord must send you a written notice. If your lease is for 12 months or more, the notice must be sent between three and six months before your lease ends. The notice must indicate the new rent and the legal deadline for refusing the increase.
If you don’t receive a notice, you can stay in your apartment for the same rent and on the same conditions as your previous lease.
You have one month to refuse the increase. Your refusal must be in writing. There is a sample notice of refusal on the website of the Régie du logement (rental board). If you don’t reply to the landlord’s notice, it means you accept the increase and other changes stated in the notice.
After receiving your notice of refusal, your landlord has one month to ask the Régie to decide the increase or try to reach an agreement with you. If you don’t agree on the rent and your landlord doesn’t go to the Régie, your lease is automatically renewed without any change.
Repossession and Eviction
In some situations, landlords can take back or repossess an apartment for themselves or a close family member. Landlords can also evict or force a tenant to leave if they want to do major work, such as enlarging or subdividing the building.
To evict a tenant or repossess an apartment, a landlord must send the tenant a notice at least six months before the end of the lease if the lease is for six months or more.
You Want to Leave
A tenant must respect the lease until it ends, except in very specific situations. If you want to move when it ends, you must notify your landlord. You must give your notice between three and six months before the end of the lease if your lease is for 12 months or more. After giving your notice, you must allow possible tenants to visit your apartment.
If you want to leave before the lease ends, you need your landlord’s permission. If your landlord doesn’t agree, you can sublet your apartment or assign your lease.