Version en français – Comment quitter avant la fin du bail?
You want to get rid of your apartment? What do you need to do to put an end to this contract between you and your landlord? Different solutions are available to you.
Cancellation of the lease
Lease cancellation requires the agreement of both parties (landlord and tenant). You must notify your landlord of your intention to leave and offer to conclude an agreement in order to terminate the lease. This agreement must be written and states the terms of the agreement such as the date of departure (and other conditions, if any). Once signed, the agreement releases both parties from their obligations. It is important to keep a copy.
Note that there are 4 cases provided by the law that permit you to cancel your lease without the consent of the landlord:
- if you are assigned a low-income housing (Resiliation low-rental housing)
- if you cannot live in your home due to a disability which occured after signing your lease;
- if you are an older person who is admitted permanently to a nursing home or in a nursing home recognized by the Regional Board of Health and Social Services (Resiliation Long-term care);
- if you are victim of domestic violence, a sexual assault or if your safety or your child’s is threatened (Reply Spousal violence).
Example of a cancellation agreement
Assignment of the lease
Lease assignment allows you to transfer your lease to a new tenant and, unlike subletting, it frees you from all responsibilities inherent in the lease.
Steps to follow:
- You need to find someone who wants to live in your apartment;
- You must send a lease assignment notice by registered mail to your landlord and mention your intention to assign the lease to a specific person at a specific date. You must include the name and address of that person;
- Your landlord has 15 days after receiving the notice to deny that person. In this case, he must tell you in writing the reasons for refusal. He may only refuse if the potential tenant has been convicted of non-payment of rent by the Tribunal administratif du logement or is insolvent.
- If your landlord fails to answer within the delay, the transfer will take place as scheduled and you’ll be free from all your obligations since it is the new tenant who will now assume the rights and obligations under the lease. It is better to sign a lease assignment agreement with the new tenant to make it official.
Example: Assignement Agreement and Lease Assignement notice
Subletting is mostly used when you have to temporarily leave but wish to return afterwards. You remain responsible for your lease and rent. If you choose to sublet your apartment for a period of time, know that you cannot exceed the term of your lease. In addition, following the same procedure as with a lease assignment, you must inform the owner of the sublease and the identity of the sub-tenant by sending a notice by registered mail. Unlike the case of lease assignment, here the subtenant does not have the right to maintain occupancy (the right to stay indefinitely). Therefore, if he wishes to remain in the dwelling at the end of the lease, he will have to reach an agreement with your landlord. For you, if you wish to terminate your lease or avoid it being renewed, you must inform the landlord according to the usual rules.
Example: Notice subletting