If you are looking for an apartment or a room for September, start looking in June or early in July. Although you’ll find a variety of listings at all times during the year, we suggest you start looking 2 months in advance.
Houses and apartments rentals generally require you to sign a one year lease. In most cases, rooms in a house are rented out for 4- to 8- month periods and sometimes for up to 12 months.
Never put down a deposit to hold an apartment unless you have a written agreement indicating whether it is refundable.
Can you afford it? Consider all related expenses: utilities, heating, electricity, parking, Internet, etc.
Is the neighbourhood safe? Even at night? Is it close enough? Are you comfortable walking or biking to the campus? Do you have easy access to mass transportation?
Never sign a lease based upon a model. Insist on seeing your actual apartment.
Check appliances. Run water in all sinks, showers and tubs. Flush toilets, and check the air conditioning and heating.
Is it clean? Do the carpets look worn or smell bad? Has the apartment been recently painted? Do the walls have nail holes?
Note all defects on an inventory list and have it signed by the landlord or an impartial witness. Take pictures or videotape the apartment at move-in.
Speak to tenants living in the building. Does the landlord respect their privacy? Are repairs done quickly?
Noise and parking
Check for noise and parking problems by visiting the apartment at various times during the day, at night and on weekends.
Are the doors equipped with good quality locks (even the patio door)? Is there an easy egress way? Are hallways and parking lots well lit?