As a landlord or a tenant in Ontario, it’s crucial to understand the rules surrounding a landlord’s right of entry into a rental unit. To facilitate a harmonious living arrangement, it’s essential for both parties to be aware of their rights and responsibilities under the Residential Tenancies Act, 2006 (RTA). 

This blog post aims to provide clarity on this matter and guide you through the intricacies of the law.


Understanding the Legislation


Sections 26 and 27 of the RTA outline the circumstances in which a landlord may enter a rental unit. Let’s break down these scenarios:


Entry without Notice (Section 26)


Emergency: Landlords may enter without notice in cases of emergencies. This includes situations where immediate access is required to address a significant issue, such as a water leak or gas leak.


Tenant’s Consent: If the tenant consents to the landlord’s entry at the time the landlord arrives, no prior notice is necessary.


Cleaning Agreements: If your tenancy agreement stipulates that the landlord must clean the rental unit at specific intervals, they may enter during those times or, if not specified, between 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m.


Showing the Unit to Prospective Tenants: When either the landlord or tenant has given notice to terminate the tenancy, the landlord may enter between 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. to show the unit to prospective tenants. However, they must make reasonable efforts to inform the tenant in advance.


Please note that even if the tenant has requested repairs, the landlord cannot enter without consent to perform them unless consent is granted at the time of arrival.


Entry with Notice (Section 27)


Repairs, Replacements, or Work: Landlords can enter the rental unit to carry out repairs, replacements, or work with at least 24 hours’ written notice to the tenant.


Mortgagee or Insurer Viewing: A landlord may allow a potential mortgagee or insurer to view the rental unit with 24 hours’ notice.


Inspection for State of Repair: If an inspection is necessary to determine the unit’s state of repair, health, safety, and compliance with standards, and it’s reasonable to conduct it, landlords can enter with 24 hours’ notice.


Other Reasons: Landlords can also enter for other reasonable reasons specified in the tenancy agreement.


Providing Written Notice


When giving notice, it’s crucial to include:

  • The reason for entry.
  • The date of entry.
  • A time window between 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m.
  • Who can enter


A landlord or their authorized agent, such as a superintendent, can enter the rental unit. If someone else is hired for work, the landlord or superintendent should accompany them.


Specifying the Time of Entry


Specify a specific entry time when possible. Otherwise, provide a reasonable window of time. The choice depends on factors like the nature of the work and its impact on the tenant’s use of the unit.


Frequency of Entry


Landlords should make reasonable efforts to limit the frequency of entries, whether for repairs, replacements, or inspections, to what’s necessary. Frequent and unnecessary entries can be considered interference with the tenant’s right to enjoy the unit.


Methods of Service of the Notice


Landlords can deliver entry notices to tenants using methods outlined in section 191 of the RTA or Rule 3 of the Board’s Rules of Practice.


Tenants’ Rights and Responsibilities


Tenants have the right to remain in the rental unit during a landlord’s entry. However, they cannot deny entry solely because it’s inconvenient. To ensure a smooth process, tenants should:

  • Not interfere with the landlord’s right to enter.
  • Not interfere with the landlord or their agents.
  • Take necessary steps to provide access to rooms where work is to occur


Remember, clear communication and understanding of these rules are crucial for a harmonious landlord-tenant relationship. By adhering to the law and practicing mutual respect, we can create a rental environment that is fair, balanced, and conducive to peaceful coexistence. 

So, let’s unlock the doors to trust and understanding and build a strong foundation for successful landlord-tenant relationships.

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