The Ultimate Accommodation Checklist for International Students in Canada
Posted On December 8, 2023
As an international student preparing to study in Canada, one of the most important aspects to consider is your accommodation. Finding a place to live is crucial for a comfortable and successful stay in a new country.
To help you with this process, we have created a comprehensive accommodation checklist specifically tailored to international students in Canada. This checklist will guide you through the essential items and considerations for finding and setting up your living space in Real Estate Canada.
Before you begin the accommodation search, it is essential to do thorough research and planning. Explore different housing options for international students. This could be on-campus residences, off-campus apartments, staying with a local family, or sharing a place. Each option has pros and cons, so think about what suits you and your budget.
If you decide on off-campus housing, start by considering the location of your school. Check areas near campus, public transport, grocery stores, and restaurants. Think about what’s convenient for your daily routine.
2. Figure Out Your Budget
The next and critical step, figure out your budget. Consider rent, utilities, and transportation costs. Make sure your budget matches what you can afford. It’s important for a hassle-free living experience.
Decide if you want to live alone or with roommates. Living with others can help share housing costs and make new friends. But be ready to get along and compromise if you have roommates. Making smart choices in these areas will improve your living experience during your studies.
3. Search for Accommodation
Once you have completed your research and planning, it is time to search for suitable accommodation.
Explore your university’s resources to see if they offer services for international students to find housing. Many universities have housing offices or online platforms that help you find listings or connect with potential roommates.
You can look at the best real estate websites in Canada, such as Save Max, Craigslist, or Facebook Marketplace. Contact local community groups, student associations, or social media groups for international students. They usually have helpful information or recommendations about where to live.
Consider using a real estate agent or rental agency specializing in student housing. They can guide you through the rental market and help with the paperwork for renting a property.
4. Evaluate Potential Options
Once you’ve narrowed down your potential accommodation, you must visit them in person before making a final decision. It’s a good idea to see multiple options to make comparisons.
Create a checklist to assess each accommodation during the viewings. Evaluate factors like cleanliness, safety, proximity to amenities, condition of furniture and appliances, and the overall atmosphere of the neighbourhood.
Schedule viewings by contacting landlords or property owners. Don’t hesitate to ask questions during the viewing to clarify doubts or concerns. Ask about lease terms, rental costs, utility expenses, maintenance responsibilities, and other relevant information.
If you’re considering shared accommodations, take the opportunity to meet and interact with potential roommates. Assess their compatibility and ensure you feel comfortable living with them.
5. Sign the Lease
Once you’ve found the perfect place to live, it’s time to sign the lease agreement. Take a close look at the contract and understand everything in it. Pay attention to how long the lease is, how much rent you have to pay, the security deposit, and any rules from the landlord.
If you’re not sure about something in the lease, get help from a professional like a lawyer or housing advisor. They can ensure the agreement is fair to both parties and follows the law.
Talk to the landlord to understand who is responsible for maintenance and repairs, utility payments, and any other obligations stipulated in the lease.
Before you move in, take pictures or videos of how the place looks. This way, you have proof of how it was before you moved in. It can help you get your security deposit back when you leave.
6. Set Up Your Living Space
Once you’ve signed the lease and got the keys to your new place, it’s time to make it feel like home. List the important furniture and appliances you need, like a bed, desk, chair, and kitchen essentials. You can save money by buying second-hand things or renting them.
Get the things you need for the kitchen, like plates, bowls, utensils, pots, and pans. Think about what you like to cook and get what you need.
Get comfy bedding, like sheets, pillows, and blankets. Remember bathroom stuff like towels, shower curtains, and things you use every day.
In addition, you can make the most of your space by getting shelves, bins, or organizers. This helps you keep things neat and use your space well.
Last but not least, set up important services like electricity, water, and internet. Check different companies to find the best prices and services. This way, your new place will be ready for you to live comfortably.
7. Prioritize Safety and Security
You must pay attention to your safety and security when living in a new environment, even if you are choosing from safe condos in Mississauga for rent.
Ensure that your accommodation has secure locks on all doors and windows. Consult with the landlord or property owner to address any security concerns. You can get tenant’s insurance to protect your belongings in case of theft, damage, or accidents. Consult with insurance providers to explore coverage options that suit your needs.
Familiarize yourself with emergency contact numbers for local authorities, medical services, and campus security. Store these numbers in your phone and keep a physical copy in a readily accessible place.
Take personal safety precautions by being aware of your surroundings, especially when travelling alone at night. Avoid walking in poorly lit or unsafe areas, and use public transportation or arrange a safe ride.
8. Connect with the Community
Building connections and a support network is essential for an international student’s fulfilling and enjoyable experience. Familiarize yourself with support services available on campus, such as counselling services, academic advisors, and global student support offices. These resources can provide guidance and support throughout your educational journey.
Take advantage of orientation and welcome events organized by your educational institution to meet fellow students, learn about campus resources, and get acquainted with the local community.
Participate in student clubs and organizations that align with your interests and hobbies. Attend social activities and community events to immerse yourself in the local culture and make connections outside of your academic environment.
Additional Tips and Considerations
Here are some additional tips and considerations to ensure a smooth transition and enjoyable stay in Canada:
Be open-minded and embrace the cultural differences you encounter. Take the opportunity to learn about Canadian culture, customs, and traditions.
Create a budget to manage your cash flow effectively. Track your expenses, prioritize your needs, and explore cost-saving measures such as cooking at home and using public transportation.
Develop good time management skills to balance academic responsibilities and personal life. Create schedules, set goals, and allocate time for studying, socializing, and self-care.
Stay updated with important information and announcements from your educational institution, such as academic deadlines, events, and campus policies. Regularly check your university email or online portals for updates.
Do not hesitate to seek help or support when needed. Contact professors, advisors, or fellow students for academic or personal assistance.
Welcome to Canada!
Finding and setting up accommodation as an international student in Canada can be an exciting yet challenging process. Following this comprehensive accommodation checklist, you will be well-prepared to navigate the housing market, select a suitable place to live, and set up your living space.
Consider your preferences, budget, and safety, and take advantage of the available resources and support. Contact us, and we will gladly help you search for accommodation in this beautiful country.