A tenant is asking me for consent to sublet her rental unit because of a job transfer which will be for a few months. I have no problem with her subletting but do I have the right to screen the candidates for the sublet?
Unlike an assignment a landlord does not really have the right to screen candidates for a sublet since the original tenant is still the one responsible for the rent and anything that happens in the rental unit. In a sublet situation the landlord will not be dealing with the subtenant directly but rather with the tenant only.
If a tenant assigns a rental unit without obtaining the landlord’s consent, the landlord may apply to the Landlord and Tenant Board for an order to evict the “unauthorized” occupant. The landlord must make this application within 60 days of discovering the unauthorized occupant.
A tenant may give the landlord notice of termination within 30 days of the date an assignment request is made if the tenant asked the landlord for consent to assign the rental unit …
a) and the landlord refused;
b) and the landlord did not respond within 7 days of the request;
c) to a potential assignee and the landlord refused consent to the assignment of the rental unit;
d) to a potential assignee and the landlord did not respond within seven days after the request is made.
All landlords should be aware that:
- The assignment of a rental unit to a potential assignee cannot be arbitrarily or unreasonably refused;
- A landlord who has given general consent to the assignment can refuse consent to a specific assignee;
- A landlord may only charge a tenant reasonable out of pocket expenses incurred in giving consent.
There aren’t any particular forms to use. Ensure the outgoing tenant gives you a letter confirming that he/she is leaving. With regards to the new person, you can include an addendum to the lease stating that this new person will become a new tenant and assume the outgoing tenant’s share of the lease.
When a tenant “assigns” a rental unit, the tenant gives up all rights and responsibility related to the rental unit and tenancy agreement and assigns them to a new tenant.
The Residential Tenancies Act establishes several rules related to the issue of “assignment”. There are two types of consent for assignment, “general consent” or “specific consent”.
If a tenant requests the general consent of the landlord, the landlord may either consent to the assignment or refuse to consent.
If a tenant is seeking “specific consent” the landlord may,
- consent to the assignment of the rental unit to a potential assignee;
- refuse consent to the assignment of the rental unit to the potential assignee; or
- refuse consent to the assignment of the rental unit.
A landlord cannot unreasonably or arbitrarily refuse consent to an assignment of a rental unit to a potential assignee.
The basement tenant wants to move end of March but has a lease until July 31. He proposed assigning the rental unit, but I will soon leave for an extended holiday and return in May. Can I refuse the assignment since I’ll be away and have no one to manage the details?
If the tenant has asked for your consent to assign the tenancy, you have the option of refusing consent. However, if you refuse the tenant has the option to give 30 days’ notice and terminate the lease. Please review our Fact Sheet on Subletting and Assignment to get a better idea of how it works, here is the link, https://landlordselfhelp.com/media/Subletting-and-Assignment.pdf.
My tenant vacated without notice, taking all their furniture and belongings, but left someone in possession who claims they’ve sublet. The lease requires the landlord’s written consent must first be obtained. What can I do?
If your tenant has moved out for certain and left someone else in the unit without asking you for consent to assign or sublet the unit, that person is considered an unauthorized occupant. If this is the case then you will have to file an application with the Landlord and Tenant Board to evict the unauthorized occupant. The application you need to file is a Form A2 – Application About a Sublet or an Assignment. This application MUST be filed within 60 days of discovering the unauthorized occupant. The Board will schedule a hearing and issue a decision to evict whoever is living there.
The provisions for subletting a rental unit under the Residential Tenancies Act apply to all tenancies whether they are for a fixed term or not, subject to the consent of the landlord. In a sublet situation, the sublet agreement must end on a specific date BEFORE the end of the tenant’s term or period.
How do I deal with a tenant that is away for months at a time and lets other people live in her apartment while she is away?
This seems like a sublet situation but if a tenant plans to sublet their unit the tenant must get the landlord’s consent and they also have to have a sub tenancy agreement between themselves. If you find out that she has sublet without your consent there is an application you could file with the Landlord and Tenant Board to terminate the tenancy (Application A2).
You may be able to do something about the fact that the tenant sublet his unit without your consent, which would be to file an application with the Landlord and Tenant Board to terminate the tenancy and evict the unauthorized occupant. However, there is nothing you can do with regards to the person being a minor. The Residential Tenancies Act does not make any reference to age, in fact under the Human Rights Code, landlords cannot deny accommodation based on the person being under age.