Priorities for tenants
- To find safe, comfortable and affordable housing for you and your family
- To find a home so you can continue on your journey to a new and safe future
- To be treated with respect and have a landlord that understands the law and can follow the Residential Tenancies Act guidelines
Priorities for Landlords
- To have a dependable tenant who is respectful, clean, pays their rent on time and doesn’t cause problems with their fellow tenants
- To have a tenant that respects the law and can follow the Residential Tenancies Act guidelines
Things to consider
- Pets – Many landlords are uncomfortable with renting to people with pets, especially larger dogs. As a prospective tenant, you might have to convince the landlord your pet is an essential part of your family and will not pose any problems. In other words, you may have to ‘sell’ your pet to the landlord. If your pet is well-behaved and fully trained, let your landlord know. If you are willing to muzzle your dog when you are in common areas in your building, even if your dog is friendly, share that with your landlord to show that you are aware of how your dog may impact on other residents and that you are prepared to fully look after your pet. Share with your landlord how important your pet is to you and that it will be well cared for on your landlord’s property.
- Non-payment of Rent Issues – Contact the Transitional and Housing Support Program in your community. Most communities have programs in place to assist you with paying rent arrears or helping with other financial assistance so you have the money in your budget to pay your rent. Talk to us about budgeting and community resources to help.
- Abuse Issues – Transitional Housing Support Workers are in place to help you as you work to create a life free from violence, both for you and your children. We are here to help with one-on-one support counseling, safety planning, and connecting you with community resources and information. Whether you’ve been to a shelter or not, you don’t have to go through this process alone – we’re here to help.
- Non-payment of Utilities Issues – It can be hard to make ends meet and when you’re choosing between rent, utilities, food, and all the other things your family needs, some bills don’t get paid. Transitional Housing Support Workers are aware of what’s available in your community to assist. We’re here to help remove some of the barriers you face, and to help you face the challenges ahead.
- Damage to Property – This can be a reality. There are programs that your landlord can turn to for help and there are options for you as well. If you have been the victim of a violent crime or domestic/sexual violence and damage has been done to your property, there may be funds available to help. Contact the Transitional and Housing Support Program in your community for more information.
- If you are on social assistance, such as Ontario Works or ODSP, offer to have your rent paid directly to the landlord.
- If you are staying in a shelter and do not want potential landlords to know, use a friend or family members contact information and landlords can leave a message for you there.
- Explore your rights as a tenant – see the tenant quiz on this site or visit the Landlord and Tenant Board link www.ltb.gov.on.ca
- Remember, a landlord cannot ask for more than one month’s rent as a deposit. If a landlord decides they do not want to rent to you, they should return the deposit. If they do not, you can apply to the Landlord and Tenant Board for assistance.
- A lease must contain: the landlord’s legal name and address, the date the tenancy will begin, the amount of the rent and the date and or day each month that rent is to be paid on, what is included in the rent, such as snow removal, lawn care, utilities and who controls the thermostat.
- If the landlord wants to evict you and you do not agree, you do not have to leave immediately. You can dispute your eviction. Once you receive an application to terminate tenancy from your landlord, you only have 5 days to dispute it!
- You cannot be evicted by a handwritten letter from your landlord.
- Never sign anything agreeing to move out.
Click here for a more complete list of information.
Click here to take the quiz
Click here to download the PDF
What can a Transitional Housing Support Worker do for you?
- assist you in finding safe and affordable housing.
- accompany you to view accommodations and meet the landlord.
- link you with community supports and services, including those for issues of abuse and its impacts.
- advocate on your behalf with your landlord or other agencies if you have any difficulties or need information or support.
- provide you with assistance with day-to-day life skills, such as budgeting, coping strategies and other housing related issues.
- safety plan with you and your children, prioritizing safety issues from a partner.
- help you avoid eviction.
- be an emotional support as you transition from an abusive relationship into a life free from abuse.