Security deposit amount
The security deposit cannot amount to more than one month’s rent at the time the tenancy starts. It cannot be increased as rent increases.
Holding the money
Landlords must put all security deposits in an interest-bearing trust account in a bank, treasury branch, credit union or trust company in Alberta within 2 banking days of the time they collect them from the tenant.
The landlord is required to keep security deposit records for at least 3 years after the tenancy ends.
Landlords must pay interest on their tenants’ security deposits at the end of each tenancy year.
The interest must be paid every year unless the landlord and tenant agree in writing that the interest will be compounded yearly and paid to the tenant at the end of the tenancy.
Security deposit interest formula
The minimum annual interest rate that landlords must pay on security deposits is determined by a formula set out in the Security Deposit Interest Rate Regulation.
Current and past interest rates payable on security deposits
|Time period||Minimum Annual Interest Rate|
|January 1, 2009 to December 31, 2020||0%|
|January 1, 2008 to December 31, 2008||0.5%|
|January 1, 2007 to December 31, 2007||0.3%|
|January 1, 2002 to December 31, 2006||0%|
|January 1, 2001 to December 31, 2001||1.75%|
|January 1, 2000 to December 31, 2000||1.15%|
|January 1, 1999 to December 31, 1999||0.75%|
|January 1, 1997 to December 31, 1998||0%|
|January 1, 1996 to December 31, 1996||2.5%|
|January 1, 1995 to December 31, 1995||2.75%|
|July 1, 1994 to December 31, 1994||1.5%|
|February 1, 1993 to June 30, 1994||3.0%|
|March 1, 1987 to January 31, 1993||6.0%|
|January 1, 1984 to February 28, 1987||8.0%|
Calculate your security deposit interest
Returning a deposit
Tenants have the right to get their security deposits back, if they meet certain conditions.
Security or damage deposit return conditions
When they move out, tenants have the right to get their deposits back, with any interest owing, as long as:
- there is no damage beyond normal wear and tear. Normal wear and tear is deterioration that occurs over time with use even with reasonable care and maintenance
- the rental premises have been properly cleaned
- no rent or other costs are owing
Sample cleaning list for tenants (PDF, 100 KB)
Tenants should provide a forwarding address to the landlord in writing and keep copies of all their documents for 3 years.
If return conditions are not met
If the tenant does not meet the conditions, the landlord has the right to keep part or all of the security deposit to cover costs. If the costs exceed the security deposit, the landlord can take legal action to claim for the money owing. A tenant who disagrees with deductions from the security deposit may also apply to the RTDRS or Court.
If there are no deductions for rent, cleaning, repairs, or other costs, such as utilities, late fees or legal fees, the landlord must pay the tenant the full deposit plus interest within 10 days of the day the tenant gave up possession of the rental premises.
The Consumer Contact Centre can provide information on many topics related to landlords and tenants: