Landlord Rules: How to Evict a Tenant In Ontario

It’s unfortunate, but part of the business of being a landlord is dealing with tenant problems. From unpaid rent to messy homes, there’s a lot of situations that you will encounter that might be frustrating for you. But dealing with them efficiently will make your business more successful in the long run.

One situation that landlords may run into that they are unsure how to deal with is how to evict a bad tenant in Ontario. Whether they’ve broken the rules or are just overstaying their contract period, eviction is a tough situation to deal with.

Let’s review the right times to consider eviction, how to evict a tenant in Ontario, and other tips that you need to know.

Reasons For Eviction Ontario

First, you need to be sure that your reasons for wanting to evict a tenant are legal. There are a variety of reasons that you may want to evict your tenant, but you have to be sure that the reason is in line with the Residential Tenancies Act.

Here are a few of the most common reasons that landlords go about evicting a tenant in Ontario:

  • Tenant owes rent
  • The tenant is often late paying rent
  • Tenant conducting illegal acts on a property
  • Tenant caused damage and/or serious issues for either the landlord or other tenants
  • The landlord is planning to tear down the building or repurpose it
  • Landlord, landlord’s family, buying party, or buying party’s family wants to move into the property

This is not a comprehensive list of reasons that you, as a landlord, may want to evict a tenant. A landlord might also want to learn how to evict a bad tenant in Ontario if they break any of the clauses laid forth in the rental contract.

Gather up information about why you plan to evict before moving to the next step of the eviction process.

tenant not paying rent ontario

The Eviction Process: A Simple Guide

The eviction process can be quite complicated, so this guide will give you the broader, necessary details that you need to get a handle on the process. Once you know about this process generally, you will be able to move through each step with more confidence.

Step 1: Reason for Eviction

As mentioned above, you need to have a legal reason for evicting a tenant. Whatever the reason is, you need to have proof of it being an issue for you as a landlord. This information will need to be brought to the appropriate authorities for a legal eviction.

Step 2: Give Tenant Written Notice

In Ontario, you can use official forms to give your tenant written notice. In all but the most extreme cases, you must give your tenant written notice of your eviction before attempting to get them to leave the property.

These forms can be found on the CLEO website, and sticking to the method laid out in them will help both you and your tenants have a clear understanding of what is happening when the eviction will occur and any other details that must be communicated.

There are also set rules to the amount of notice that you must give your tenant. These dates are as follows:

  • Owe rent: 14 days
  • Causing damage/disturbing neighbours: 20 days
  • Drug-related issues: 10 days
  • The landlord wants to move in 60 days
  • The landlord wants to tear down the building: for 120 days

As always, there is some exception to these dates depending on the specific property type. There are a lot of intricacies to the rules of eviction, but knowing this base information will help you set up the process appropriately.

Step 3: Move Up To The Board

If your tenant does not move out within the allotted time or correct the problematic behaviour, it’s time for you to move your process to the Landlord and Tenant Board.

This board manages the oversight of many tenant and landlord relationship problems, so it is with them that you will want to file for eviction.

You will have to file an application for eviction with the Board. The application will explain the issue, what you want to be done about it, and other essential information. The Board will review this information and schedule a hearing if you seem to have enough reason for the eviction.

Step 4: The Hearing

Come to the hearing prepared with information about your eviction application. Bring evidence of the issue that you are having, how you have attempted to resolve the problem with the tenant, and the written notice that you gave them.

Your goal here is to prevent all important information so that everyone can make fair and clear decisions about whether or not an eviction should take place. The tenant should also come prepared with this information.

At the hearing, there will be a lot of back and forth so that the overseeing Board member can make a decision. If you or the tenant does not show up, it is likely the Board will rule in the other member’s favour.

Step 5: The Result

Depending on the nature of the reason for wanting to evict your tenant, the Board may provide a number of different solutions:

  • Approve request for eviction
  • Request you two make a payment plan for late rent and let them continue living there
  • Set up an order for you to receive payment back for damages
  • Work out communication problems between both parties

Depending on the result of your hearing, the whole process is nearly complete.

Step 6: Evicting

If the Board approves the eviction, you will need the Sheriff to evict your tenant and remove their belongings and let you change the lock. You cannot evict them yourself or hire a private company to do so.

Eviction Can Be Complex

Evicting a problematic tenant can be a long and complicated process, but working through each step methodically can help you regain control of your property. How to evict a tenant in Ontario is a relatively clear process, thanks to the Board’s actions.

Thankfully, moving to give your tenant a notice of eviction is enough to solve problems or get rid of bad tenants.

To avoid needing to deal with the eviction process at all, taking extra time to find good clients is an essential task. Some property management companies can help you with the tenant screening process to ensure that you are getting the best tenants that are less likely to become tenants that would require an eviction situation.

Want to learn more about how we do property management at Buttonwood? Check out our simple fee schedule.

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Sabine Ghali
Sabine Ghali
Helping real estate investors build wealth over time

Sabine Ghali, Managing Director at Buttonwood Property Management, Award Winning Real Estate Broker and an Entrepreneur at heart. Sabine is on a mission to help investors create real estate wealth over time in the Greater Toronto Area. Sabine is published in a number of media outlets, including Toronto Star, The Globe and Mail, Toronto Sun, Entrepreneur, Forbes, and Gulf News, among many others.