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Common Questions

How do I get my rental deposit back?
Last reviewed in March 2023 by the Clicklaw Editors

Landlords are not allowed to decide on their own to keep a deposit at the end of a tenancy. Once the tenant has provided a forwarding address in writing, the landlord can only keep some or all of the deposit if they have permission from the tenant or the Residential Tenancy Branch.

Good starting points include:
  • The Tenant Survival Guide, from TRAC, has a section on "Getting your deposit returned" in the chapter "Moving Out." 
  • Deposits, from TRAC, has information on how to get your deposit returned.
  • A Playbook for Tenants, from People’s Law School, has a section called “At the End of a Tenancy, How Can I Get My Security Deposit Back?” that explains what a landlord must do after you move out.
  • Renting in British Columbia, from People’s Law School, is a webinar that answers common questions about renting in BC.
  • Renting it Right, from TRAC, is an online course that covers how to get your deposit returned in a section called "Ending a Tenancy".
  • Ending a Tenancy, from the provincial government, has a section on returning deposits. It provides information on the rules for getting a deposit back and online calculators for tenants and landlords.

Need more help?

  • Tenant Info Line, by TRAC, provides information, referrals and help for tenants dealing with residential tenancy law matters.

See our related common questions:

tenants, landlords, security deposit, rental deposit, getting my deposit back, get a deposit back, withholding deposit