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Find Accommodation in Canada

”Why move to Canada?”, may very well be one of the best questions you could ever ask yourself because if you’re asking the right questions, like this one, you’re probably thinking about making the big move. What’s else is, you’re considering moving to what’s considered to be the best country to live in, in the entire world. 

When you review your list of immigration options, what’s better than a country that is among the top 10 safest in the world to reside in and also one of the most beautiful?

There is nothing quite like it. Once you’ve managed to receive an Invitation to Apply (ITA) to move to Canada, you’ve accepted it and submitted the required documentation, you’re all set to embark on your journey abroad and can start looking for accommodation in Canada.

About Housing Rentals in Canada

Depending on how many people are joining you from the start of your journey in Canada, you will have to consider exactly how much space you need in either an apartment or a house. If it’s just you moving to Canada, then it is likely that all you will need is a studio or one-bedroom apartment. Once you have moved to Canada, it’s important to be smart about your buying options and choices. Will you sign a lease to rent a two-bedroom apartment just for the sake of having a spare room? Or, what about renting a more expensive apartment before you’ve landed your dream job? 

Although it probably isn’t quite what you intended, saving money wherever it is possible is necessary if you are going to survive with what you have until you get a good job. Even if you have already received a job offer, you are still going to need time to get used to paying likely more for nearly everything than what you did back home. Even if this isn’t always the case, being ranked one of the best first-world countries in the world next to Australia, Switzerland, and Denmark, there is no doubt that you may have to turn your pennies over twice and indulge in a bit of a more frugal lifestyle during your first few months in Canada.

This especially goes for when you start your search for housing rentals. As mentioned, if you are more than one person immigrating to Canada, you are going to have to consider the cost of living for more than one person, given that you are moving with your family. The moment you’ve decided what the size, preferences, and budget of your new home should be, you’ll surely find some options with reasonable prices on the Canadian housing market to match what you are looking for.

When you rent a home in Canada, much like many countries abroad, your “landlord” is the designated person who owns your house or sometimes, the entire building that you live in. In some cases, landlords can hire a “property manager” to collect your rent, but normally collect it themselves. Every Canadian province and territory has different laws for renting and criteria on what landlords are responsible for, which can be reviewed here.

Landlords are also responsible for explaining relevant laws for the province or territory you live in and must provide you with the contact information of rental authorities. Apart from this, your landlord is also in charge of keeping your building safe and in a good condition and must provide you with all that is included with your rent. This includes your stove, refrigerator, and heating. 

Renting in Canada, you are expected to pay your rent in full on time, contact your landlord if there is anything that must be fixed and keep a clean and well-maintained home. You must also contact your landlord if anything breaks and needs to be fixed and allow the landlord manager access to your home when something needs to be repaired or the apartment must be shown to potential tenants if you want to move. 

How to Find Accommodation in Canada

Woman holding keys to a house

To look for housing options in Canada, you can ask for referrals, check classified ads in community centers on bulletin boards and newspapers and check online classified ads. You can also visit rental agency websites, ask for help from an immigrant-serving organization, find a rental agency to help you find the ideal home, or visit neighborhoods and search for “for rent” signs on either houses or buildings.

Before visiting an apartment or house that you could potentially want to rent, it is helpful to make a list of questions that you would like to ask the landlord before considering renting any given property. In Canada, your landlord is likely to ask you about the information on where you work, review your credit history, and ask you what your current income is. If you are yet to start a job or don’t have one, don’t have references, or credit history in Canada, you can seek help from an immigrant-serving organization.  

Renting Vs Buying

One of the biggest determining factors for renting or buying a home in Canada is the crime rate in the given suburb or city. By using a search engine, you can research the crime statistics in every area, which is relatively low in each province and territory in Canada. Should you be moving with family members, especially children, you would have to consider your children’s interests too, such as their education, which means that you will have to move to a suburb or city that has a school you are interested in sending your children to. Other than that, it’s also necessary to move to a community that shares your political views and sometimes religious beliefs, yet these two factors are only necessary for some people. 

When you start looking for a place to live in Canada, you can convert Canadian dollars to your currency to get a rough idea of how much money you will need per month to live in Canada. This is essential to know as it will make it much easier for you to decide what you can afford when it comes to either renting or buying a residence and where to rent or buy it. Then, it is also required to consider other factors like whether you will have to pay for internet and utilities that will make your rent cost seem worth it. 

When you decide on where to live, you must always learn more about the cost of transport in Canada, including the cost of gasoline, public transport, and a taxi, which is crucial to know as you will need transport to get to work and around. After all, Canada is the second-largest country in the world. For this reason, some form of wheels is always essential, even if you have to rent them.

Fuel Prices for Living in Canada

The difference between renting and buying a place to live is similar to other countries, yet there are some free things you need to know. When you rent an apartment or house, you must sign a lease with a landlord and in most cases, view the apartment complex in person before the landlord can give it to you. This is a big problem for foreigners that are moving to Canada as they have to arrive in the country and view their potential place of residence first before being enabled to sign a contract to rent or buy it. Since this is the case for many people that are looking for a rental, the best thing to do is to seek temporary housing for at least one to four weeks to ensure you can make living arrangements before you transition to a rental agreement. 

Renting

At the start of your journey living in Canada, it is often recommended that newcomers rent an apartment for at least a year first, which is the general minimum lease period, instead of buying a property as this is a much cheaper option to start with. With rentals, you have multiple options to choose from that differ in size based on your needs. To build a good credit score in Canada, then renting an apartment for a full year or longer and maintaining consistent payments is a great way to do so.

Before you choose an apartment, it is necessary to read reviews on apartment review sites before visiting the property.

Some of the best rental review sites in Canada include the following:

Once you have checked the reviews on a couple of listings and you have found a couple of apartment options that have piqued your interest, upon contacting the landlord, you will be asked to present documents to your landlord or the rental company that found you the listing. This is a requirement to approve you for the unit you would like to rent.

Rental companies require the following information:

  • Proof of a job contract
  • List of references
  • Insurance deposit
  • Letter of accommodation
  • Proof of Canadian credit score or monthly income
  • 3 Months rent upfront (Only for some rental options)

Top Rental Platforms to Search for Properties:

Buying

Apart from rental options, if you have the finances to buy a property, then your best bet is to buy either a house or a condominium. The perk to buying over renting, which even though it might be more expensive, belongs to you, which means that you may do with it as you please.

If you are interested in buying a place of your own, the best thing to do is to hire a realtor that can assist you with your house budget. These experts will ensure that you make all of the right decisions that are based on your needs when you are looking for a property. They are also skilled in negotiating prices, which means that they will help you get the best one in terms of what you are looking for.

The best way to find a real estate agent to assist you is to look at For Sale signs, which always display the agent and their credentials. You can then contact them directly. Alternatively, you can visit the Canadian Real Estate Association’s website and click on FIND A REALTOR to get assisted fast. Once you have a real estate agent, they will assist you to make a reasonable offer on the home you are interested in buying. Should it be accepted, you must hire a lawyer to assist you with the transfer of the property to your name. Before applying for a loan from a bank to aid your purchase, you need to review the details of the property’s mortgage before you can apply for a loan.

The Best Option for You

Map of Canadian Provinces

With 13 provinces and territories to choose from, it’s not as easy to find the best place to live in Canada as you may think. Due to having many options to choose from, all of which suit different kinds of people and their needs, when you move to Canada, you can rest assured that you have taken a step in the right direction towards a brighter future. 

One of the biggest reasons among many why Canada is as great as it is, is because it offers something for everybody and leaves no stone left unturned as it welcomes people from all over the world into the country. Meeting the right requirements and proper medical and criminal record screening measures, however, the government ensures that Canadian immigration remains one of the best options for foreigners to build a better future for themselves and their families.

If you have not applied for permanent Canadian residency, why wait? Start the process today, and maybe in a few months, it can be you who's looking for accommodation in Canada, on your way to start a new life in one of the best countries in the world. 

By getting in touch with one of the government-approved Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultants (RCICs) we work with, you can get the ball rolling on changing your life for the better and building a brighter, more prospective future today. If you already have an RCIC, find out whether they are eligible to assist you here.    

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