Ending a tenancy

Landlords and tenants are responsible for ending the tenancy lawfully.

Last published: February 24, 2023

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Notice to end a tenancy 


Landlords and tenants are responsible for ending the tenancy lawfully. Both parties must have the chance to take part in a condition inspection and to discuss any deductions from the damage deposit 

How to end a tenancy 

Learn how you can serve notice to end a tenancy as a:  


Both landlords and tenants can be ordered to pay money to each other if they don’t follow the law when ending a tenancy. 

During a tenancy 

Learn more about compensation for issues during a tenancy.  

When a tenancy ends 

Tenants may be entitled to compensation when a tenancy ends.  
Learn about the compensation for different types of notices:  

Mutual agreement to end a tenancy 

Landlords and tenants may mutually agree to end a tenancy (PDF, 102KB). A mutual agreement is different than a notice to end tenancy.  

Mutually agreeing to end a tenancy can mean tenants will not get compensation that may have been due if the landlord had served them a notice to end tenancy instead.  


Landlords and tenants can’t require each other to sign a mutual agreement to end a tenancy. Before you sign an agreement, make sure you know your rights and responsibilities.

Ending a fixed-term tenancy 

A fixed-term tenancy can only be ended early in any of these circumstances: 

A landlord can only require a tenant to move out at the end of a fixed-term tenancy agreement if: 

Other reasons for ending a tenancy 

Tenancies may end when:  

  • An unexpected event like an earthquake or a fire affects the unit
  • The tenant gives up the tenancy without proper notice
  • The landlord agrees to let someone else take over the lease
  • The bank is repossessing and re-selling the property
  • The tenant or their pets or guests are disturbing or endangering the landlord or other tenants or damaging the property 

Learn more about ending a tenancy in special circumstances.

Moving out 

Moving date 

When a landlord or tenant prepares a notice to end a tenancy, they include a date when the tenancy will end. This is the effective date of the notice to end tenancy. The tenant must move out by 1 pm on the effective date of the notice.  

Contact the Residential Tenancy Branch if you're not sure about the effective date of a notice.  

Moving out means making sure the unit is clean and all keys are returned to the landlord. 

Communicating about the moving date 

The landlord should talk to the tenant to confirm the moving date.  

The tenant can move out at a later time if the landlord and the tenant both agree in writing. 

Tenants who don't move out 

Move-out inspections and moving fees 

At the end of a tenancy, the landlord and tenant must inspect the rental unit together.  

Learn more about move-out inspections and moving fees 

After a tenancy ends 

Learn about the steps to take after a tenancy ends: 

Changing your mind about ending a tenancy 

If a landlord or tenant changes their mind about ending a tenancy, both parties must agree to it in writing. 

Learn more about deciding whether to continue a tenancy. 

I need help

Contact the Residential Tenancy Branch if you have questions about a tenancy. 

or call: 1-800-665-8779 Monday to Friday, 9 am to 4 pm

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