Part 2 of 2: Renting in Alberta
rent increases: notice and timing There are no rent controls in Alberta. Rent can only be increased if there has not been a rent increase within the previous 365 days or since the start of the tenancy, whichever is later. Before the rent can be increased the landlord must give the following written notice:
• weekly: 12 full tenancy weeks
• monthly: three full tenancy months
• any other periodic tenancy: 90 days For mobile home sites, 180 days notice must be given by the landlord to raise the rent.
late rent payments
Rent is considered late the day after it is due. Tenants are obliged to pay the rent as specified in the lease and may be subject to penalties for late rent payments, as specified in the lease.
There are several reasons why a tenant may be evicted and the required notice period the landlord must give depends on the grounds for eviction. These reasons include:
• Significant damage or physical assault or threats to physical assault: 24-hour written notice, signed by landlord or agent, giving reason for eviction and time and date that the tenancy ends.
• Substantial breach: the landlord can either give 14-day written notice, signed by the landlord or agent, giving reason for eviction and date the tenancy ends or the landlord can apply to the Residential Dispute Resolution Service or the court to end the tenancy.
Landlords must give a minimum 24-hour written notice to make repairs, inspect repairs or show the property to prospective buyers or renters, unless the tenant consents or in the case of emergency or abandonment. In a case where the tenant consents to the landlord's entry, this is not blanket consent. The landlord must get consent for each entry to the premises. may the tenant withhold rent for repairs? No.
changing locks Changing locks requires the mutual consent of the landlord and the tenant. However, either a landlord or tenant can change locks if a key is immediately made available to the other party.
pets and smoking May a landlord refuse to rent to a tenant who has pets or smokes? Yes, a landlord may refuse to rent to a tenant who has pets or smokes. If smoking and pets are allowed in the tenancy agreement then they are permitted in the rental unit.
If a no pets and no smoking clause is written into a lease and the landlord discovers that the tenant has a pet and/or smokes in the rental unit, is this grounds for the landlord to evict the tenant?
The Residential Tenancies Act (RTA) outlines the reasons a landlord may terminate a tenancy. Pets/ smoking are not included in the list. However, no pet/no smoking policies can be enforced if spelled out in a lease and agreed upon in writing by both parties. If a tenant breaches the rental agreement by having a pet or smoking in the rental premises, the landlord could apply to the courts or the Residential Tenancy Dispute Resolution Service to end the tenancy.
For more information about renting in Alberta contact: Service Alberta, 3rd Floor, 10155 – 102 Street, Edmonton, AB T5J 4L4 See Web site for area Landlord and Tenant Advisory Board locations. For general information about renting in Alberta contact the Consumer Contact Centre: 1-877-427-4088 – Outside Edmonton, Alberta only, 1-780-427-4088 – Edmonton and area.