woman reading contract

The Ontario government is requiring all landlords to use a standard lease template for all new leases beginning April 30, 2018. Lawyers are encouraged to make themselves familiar with the terms of this new lease so they can advise clients of their obligations and rights under the new lease. The information below is taken from the Government of Ontario website at The official page containing the standard lease template is at

From the Government of Ontario website:

Easy-to-understand leases

Starting April 30, 2018, landlords of most private residential rental units – from individuals to property management companies – must use the standard lease template, for all new leases.

The standard lease template does not apply in some situations, for example, if you are renting a unit in a care home (such as a retirement home), mobile home community or certain social and supportive housing.

It is written in easy-to-understand language and includes information such as:

  • the rent amount and when it’s due
  • what’s included in the rent (for example, air conditioning or parking)
  • rules or terms about the rental unit or building (for example, no smoking)

It also has a section on renter and landlord rights and responsibilities, and explains what can (and cannot) be included in a lease. For example:

  • who’s responsible for maintenance and repairs
  • when your landlord can enter your unit
  • that landlords can’t ban guests or pets

If you are entitled to a standard lease but didn’t get one, ask your landlord in writing for a copy. Once you request it, they must give it to you within 21 calendar days. If they don’t, you can withhold one month’s rent.

If you still haven’t received a standard lease 30 calendar days after you withheld one month’s rent, you can keep the withheld rent.

Please note, you cannot withhold more than one month’s rent and you must continue paying your rent for the term of your lease, even if your landlord never gives you the standard lease. However, if a standard lease is not provided, special rules allow you to end your fixed-term lease early.

Learn more about the standard lease.