In Canada you will find the following types of housing to rent :

Bachelor o studio apartment: Small apartments, good for just a person. They usually offer a big area where you can find a kitchen and a bedroom area The bathroom is usually in a different room.

Apartment: The apartments found in residential buildings usually have 2 or 3 rooms and also have a separate kitchen, a living room, and a dining room. They may also have a bathroom or a bathroom and a toilet. They are usually rented with a refrigerator and electric heater, all inclusive. Usually it has a balcony.

Condominium. They are private apartments in residential buildings. Inhabitants are usually the owners and every one pays for their utilities. Condos share some public areas, so owners pay for a monthly maintenance fee.

Room for rent: They are rooms in a house, apartment or condo. In general terms, tenants share the use of the toilet and the kitchen.

Townhouse. Usually small houses on a row of identical ones situated side by side and sharing common walls. There are private and for-rent townhouses.

Duplex: Houses having fully separate apartments or units. They can be private or for rent.


Most houses in Canada are built on concrete and iron walls These walls are strong and can resist the weight of the building. Since those walls are located on the exterior side of the building and cover the whole house, the inner space is used in various ways: to place the heating, air conditioning and machine systems, or a laundry, etc. Canadian families use the remaining place for comfortable entertainment rooms, to rest or as storage rooms, as well as for offices or private studios. It is also very common that owners adapt them for rent, with all the necessary services and an independent door, separated from the rest of the house.

Renting an apartment basement can be suitable as a temporary solution for a family on their arrival to Canada. The rent of these apartments is usually lower than the one of those located in housing buildings. Moreover, it is easy to find families that, apart from renting the apartment, are willing to help and advice their new neighbours who have just arrived in Canada.

Basement apartments are cool in the hot summer and warm in the extremely cold canadian winter. The main drawback of this type of housing is the lack of a view to exterior areas out of the windows, as due to the location of the apartment, windows only allow a little light to enter. This is a particularly negative aspect, especially when there are children, since they may have an atmosphere of confinement and darkness.

To sum up, if you decide to rent a basement apartment as your first housing solution in Canada, it may be a good alternative for several reasons. But if you have children or teenagers, you should take this alternative just as a temporary solution.


Since finding a suitable housing at a reasonable price is your first concern, your alternative may be renting an apartment with furniture, paid weekly, fortnightly, or monthly. Living for a short while in this sort of apartments will allow for seeking a better one in the medium or long term (usually for 12 months) where you will start your new life with your own furniture and everyday elements, without the stress of not having a place to stay. In this case avoid renting in some places where, because of their low rent, may not be advisable because their location or your future neighbours. Remember that you pay for is what you get.


Your first housing should be, if possible, centrally located and with enough means of transportation to allow for trips in the city.


Finding the right apartment - which is, obviously, cheaper than renting a house - can be a bit difficult, and it takes time and patience. Most probably, the first housing may not suit all the needs, but bare in mind that it will be just for a while. That situation is just normal in the process of settlement in Ontario. 


The following are the most common ways of seeking for-rent housing: 


● Ask in apartment buildings having the “For Rent” or “Vacancy”. Go to the overseer bureau, who is the one in charge of giving information in those places.


●  In  free rent magazines you will find in different public areas and in many supermarket boards.


●  In the section of classified ads in newspapers, where you will find a good variety of apartments in different city areas


●   Asking for help in organisations which offer help to newcomers 


Remember it is always advisable to phone in advance, and make an appointment with the person in charge of renting. Besides, asking for the total cost, and the additional fees for tenants, such as parking, cable tv, etc. Most apartments in Canada include electric heating and refrigerator, and the cost of water and electricity is usually included in the monthly rent, although you should make sure in every case.


Also remember that it is advisable to take into account the monthly rent and other family expenditure. You will also have to pay other services such as telephone, Internet, cable TV, apart from public transportation, etc.


Finally, keep in mind that in Ontario and Canada, a rental agreement is a legal contract to which those who sign must abide to. You cannot do away with it, and just leave overnight.



In Ontario houses and apartments are rented on 12-month bases. Remember to ask your right to move before that period in the case you find a job far from that place and you need to move. If you include that clause or condition, you will avoid being fined for not abiding to the contract. It would be reasonable to tell the owner one month in advance before you move for they to have the e time to find a new tenant.




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