Say someone intends to rent out a real property (house, apartment, etc.) to someone.

Must they own the property to legally do so?

I mean, is it legal to rent out a property if it's in the process of rent-to-own, a mortgage, etc., but isn't completely paid off and owned 100% at the time; or must it be owned to legally rent to others?

Applying only to Canada.

  • 1
    In general, you may rent out a property of which you have possession. If you possess the property through a lease, for example, you can rent the property to a sublessee. In many cases, however, you will need the permission of the owner before you can sublet the property. I'm posting this as a comment because I don't know specifically about Canadian property law.
    – phoog
    Commented Apr 26, 2016 at 19:09

1 Answer 1


You certainly don't need to own the property free and clear of all encumbrances--you can rent or even have a bed-and-breakfast in a home you have a mortgage on, for example. There may be further limits in a particular circumstance, for example, a prohibition against sub-leasing in a rental agreement or a limitation of liability in your insurance coverage.

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