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Renting a Property in Canada

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Find out in this article important information about renting a property in Canada

Whether Canada is the destination to study, work or live, the rent amount of a property will be an important part of the budget upon arrival. Knowing the different options of properties, as well as understanding how the process of renting a property works, and the rental values in the different regions of Canada, could facilitate the search for the ideal place to live. 

Types of Properties

There are different types of rental housing in Canada, with most properties already offering some of the essential home appliances such as a refrigerator, stove, dishwasher, washing machine and dryer, and in some cases, microwaves.

Furnished properties are also available to rent, with some offering basic furniture like couch, bed, and dining table, while others are fully furnished, however the cost will be higher than an unfurnished property. It is also important to note that some properties have restrictions regarding smokers and pets. 

Here are some types of properties available in Canada:

Apartment- unit located in buildings or houses that are for rent only and are owned by one landlord or company. While rental apartments normally include basic appliances, they may not include additional appliances like dishwashers, and laundry units. Laundry rooms can be located at the ground level or basement and are shared with all residents. There is also a fee to use the laundry machines. Renters are responsible for the general upkeep of the apartments, but landlords are responsible for any major unit repairs caused by general wear and tear.

Condo - units located in residential buildings, where the properties are rented directly by the owners. They usually offer several amenities such as a pool, fitness centre, party room, and laundry inside the unit. In these units, the tenant is responsible for a portion of the cost of any necessary maintenance.

Houses-) type of housing generally larger in size and which has its own private entrance and backyard. They can be detached houses, where they do not share a wall with any other residences, or semi-detached, where one common wall is shared with the neighbouring house.detached), onde as paredes são independentes, ou geminadas (semi-detached), onde se compartilha uma das paredes com a casa vizinha.

Townhouses or Row Houses - a complex of three or more houses, similar to semi-detached houses, except they share a wall on each side of the house (unless it is an end unit). This type of house has windows only on the front and back, and may not include outdoor space like a backyard.

Basement - apartment in the lower, mostly in the below-ground portion of a house. Most houses in Canada are two or three stories high, with the basement being set up to function as an independent living space, separate from the main house. They are usually cheaper than other rental options, for being smaller and often have small windows that provide limited sunlight to the unit.

Duplex or Triplex - are multi-level houses where each floor typically serves as a separate residence. However, the entrance and the laundry room could be shared. 

Room- rent of one bedroom in a house or apartment, which can be private or shared. Common areas such as the living room, kitchen and sometimes the bathroom are shared. This type of rental is more common for students or single people.

Homestay-)popular with international students, it is a type of accommodation where one can rent a room in a family house and also participate in the daily routine.

Renting a Property

Knowing what options of properties are available for rent, the next step is to look for the property in the region that will meet the needs of the individual or family, such as proximity to schools, university or place of work. It is also important to familiarise with the rental agreement before signing it.

Where to Look

There are many ways to look for a rental nowadays, however contacting a realtor could still be one of the easiest options. In addition to that, one can find online many websites offering rentals , hether from owners or rental companies

A realtor could make the search for a home effortless, since they have access to most of the properties available on the market. They can also search for properties that fit the profile of the tenant and in addition to that, another advantage is that the services provided are paid for by the owner of the property, exempting the tenant from this cost.

Websites offering rentals can be easily found with an online search. Some popular websites are Rentals.ca, RentCanada, RentSeeker and Kijiji. Porém, um dos principais sites de busca por imóveis é o (CREA)and provides properties listed all across the country.

Below, see some terms that may be useful when searching for a property:

Landlord / Landlady - property owner

Tenant - person renting the property

Lease / Rental Agreement - agreement between the landlord and tenant

Furnished - movable property

Damage Deposit - deposit to cover possible damage to the property

Tenant Insurance - insurance for the tenant's belongings

Utilities - electricity, gas and water services

Studio / Bachelor Apartment - apartment consisting mainly of one large room

Den - small area of the property that can have multiple uses

High-rise - tall building over 12 floors

Mid-rise - building that has between 4 and 12 floors

Low-rise - low-rise building with up to 3 floors

Rental Agreement

The initial rental agreement usually has a term of 12 months, which could also vary according to any agreement between the tenant and the landlord. After the initial period, there is no obligation to renew the lease for another year, and can be a month-to-month rental. Tenants can usually move in on the first or fifteenth day of the month, and in the case of termination of the lease, either by the owner or the tenant, there must be a notice of at least 60 days. 

Other important information that must be included in the rental agreement:

● owner's names, address and contact information
● monthly rent cost
● services covered by monthly payment
● conditions for the termination of the agreement
● when the owner can increase the rent and limit amount

Documents Required

To rent a property, some documents are required to formalise the rental agreement between the landlord and the tenant. Some of the documents may include:

● Identity document (preferably a Canadian issued document, like driver’s licence)
● Proof of income or employment letter
● Credit check
● Deposit (usually the last month of rent paid in advance)

In some cases, a deposit is also required for the keys to the property (amount that will be returned at the end of the lease). In the case that any of the required documents or proof of income cannot be provided, landlords could accept other options, such as letters of reference or a larger deposit.

Rental Costs

Rental prices can vary considerably in the many different regions of Canada. Larger cities, such as Toronto and Vancouver, prices are higher, while in smaller cities, prices could be more affordable. 

See below an overview of rental rates in major Canadian cities. (Values in 2021 - source: Numbeo)


Toronto

Located in Ontario, Toronto is the largest city in Canada and main financial centre. The city offers a diversified job market and several educational institutions, attracting most immigrants and students. For these reasons, the cost of renting in Toronto is one of the highest in Canada. 

The average rent for a one-bedroom apartment is $1,950, and for a 3-bedroom apartment is $3,150.

Vancouver

Located on the west coast of Canada, Vancouver has a milder climate compared to the rest of the country. It is an important centre for the technology and film industry, which attracts many immigrants to the region. Currently, it is one of the highest rental prices ​​in Canada. 

The average rent for a one-bedroom apartment is $2,100, and for a 3-bedroom apartment is $3,600.

Ottawa

The capital city of Canada and its fourth largest city, Ottawa offers an excellent quality of life, with one of the lowest crime rates in Canada.

The average rent for a one-bedroom apartment is $1,450, and for a three-bedroom apartment is $2,400.

Montreal

The largest city in Quebec and the second largest in Canada, Montreal is an important centre for the aerospace and pharmaceutical industry. Named a “global city” for hosting numerous international conferences as well as sporting and cultural events, Montreal attracts thousands of visitors every year. However, rental values ​​in the city are lower than in other large cities in Canada.

The average rent for a one-bedroom apartment is $1,130, and for a 3-bedroom apartment is $2,150.

Calgary

The third most populous city in Canada, Calgary is located in Alberta. A leader in oil and natural gas production, the city has one of the highest family incomes in the country, as well as a low unemployment rate. The cost of living in Calgary is considered to be well below large cities such as Toronto and Vancouver.

The average rent for a one-bedroom apartment is $1,220, and for a 3-bedroom apartment is $2,250.

Winnipeg

Capital of the province of Manitoba, the city is a very popular cultural centre in Canada. Winnipeg has a diversified economy, with major employment in health care, social assistance, retail and manufacturing. It has one of the lowest cost of living compared with other capitals.

The average rent for a one-bedroom apartment is $1,050, and for a 3-bedroom apartment is $1,730.

See the table below with the national rent rankings of many cities in Canada (Source: Rentals): 

Additional Costs

In addition to the monthly rent, there may also be extra costs, which could vary according to the type of property. Some of the costs are:

● Water, gas and electricity bill
● Tenant insurance
● Water heater rental (in houses)
● Parking space (in rental buildings)
● Use of washing machines and dryers
● Internet and cable TV

Finding a home in a new country requires a lot of research and attention to every detail involved in the process of renting a property. It is always important to visit the region and property intended to rent before committing to any contract. At the time of signing the agreement, make sure that all important information is contained in it.

Also, get to know the property rental regulations, since they vary according to the rules of Canadian provinces and territories. For more information, visit the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) website or contact the local regulatory body.

By Janayna Sercheli

If you wish to immigrate to Canada,, contact Klaps Immigration Consulting for more information on immigration processes.

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KLAPS IMMIGRATION CONSULTING INC.

KLAPS IMMIGRATION CONSULTING INC.

With highly qualified professionals and personalized service, our mission is to help our clients achieve their goal of studying, visiting, working or immigrating to Canada! With highly qualified professionals and personalized service, our mission is to help our clients achieve their goal of studying, visiting, working or immigrating to Canada!

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