Renting a home or apartment in Ontario, Canada, comes with its own set of rules and regulations, and it all starts with the residential tenancy agreement. This document outlines the terms and conditions of the lease agreement between the landlord and the tenant.

In 2017, the Ontario government made changes to the Residential Tenancies Act, which governs the relationship between landlords and tenants in the province. One of these changes was the introduction of a new Standard Lease Form that landlords must use for most private residential tenancies.

The new Standard Lease Form makes it easier for tenants to understand the terms of their lease agreement and provides specific information that must be included in the agreement. This includes the names and addresses of both the landlord and the tenant, the rent amount and payment details, the duration of the lease, and any rules or restrictions related to the rental property.

The Standard Lease Form also includes information on the tenant`s rights and responsibilities, such as their right to quiet enjoyment of the property, their obligation to pay rent on time, and their responsibility to maintain the property.

Landlords are required to provide tenants with a copy of the Standard Lease Form before the lease agreement is signed. If a landlord fails to provide the Standard Lease Form, the tenant may withhold up to one month`s rent.

In addition to the Standard Lease Form, landlords and tenants can include additional clauses in the lease agreement, as long as they do not conflict with the Residential Tenancies Act. These clauses may relate to things like pets, smoking, or parking, and can offer additional protections or restrictions for both parties.

It`s important for both landlords and tenants to carefully read and understand their residential tenancy agreement before signing it, as it is a legally binding document that outlines the terms of their rental relationship. With the introduction of the new Standard Lease Form in Ontario in 2017, tenants can feel more confident that they have all the necessary information and protections in place when entering into a lease agreement.