Apartments in Toronto
Renting apartments in Toronto has its own specifics. If you are planning to immigrate to Toronto, you have to be fully prepared.
Your first days may be full of unpleasant surprises. Many immigrants who land in Toronto are shocked how difficult it is to rent their first apartment. These tips are intended to make your first days in Toronto easy.
Few newcomers are prepared for the fact that apartments in Toronto are rented for a year, and that it's problematic to find something for a shorter period.
Another surprise for new immigrants is that they are unable to rent an apartment, because they have neither credit history in Canada, nor a permanent job in Toronto. For many rental apartment owners it can be insufficient to know that you have the necessary amount of money in the bank.
Another unpleasant news is that renting in Canada usually starts on the 1st day of each month. But you will have to deal with all of that if you plan to move to Toronto.
Where to stay in Toronto during your first days.
Most likely, you won't be able to rent an apartment or a house on your first day. The search process will take several days. Therefore you should decide where to stay in Toronto when you just arrive. If you do not have relatives or close friends who can with whom you can stay for the first time, book a hotel or a hostel. Check out cheap hotels in Toronto for some accomodation options.
The advantage of hotels is that they located in convenient places, close to the subway, so you can easily move around Toronto without a car. The disadvantage of is that they are not cheap.
There are also cheap Toronto hostels, with prices ranging from 20 to 50 dollars per night per person. In a hostel you might sharing a room with other people. Typically, rooms in hostels are designed for 4-8 people. They are focused on young people who travel around the world. You can see what hostels are available and book right here:
Things to remember when starting to look for apartments in Toronto
The most important thing you must remember when traveling to Toronto is that it's a very heterogeneous city. Your safety and well being directly depend on where you will settle.
The most common mistake new immigrants make is to assume that Toronto is safe and equal everywhere. Well, it's not. There are good and bad areas, and even dangerous areas.
Another feature of Toronto is the concentration of different ethnic groups in particular neighborhoods, with their own customs, lifestyle and environment which you might find surprising and even unpleasant.
You will need to do your research to find apartments in Toronto in the areas that suit you the most. Read some tips to decide where to live in Toronto.
Another tip for immigrants - check the quality of apartments in Toronto before you decide to rent. Many newcomers believe that housing in the city is the same everywhere, and that if there are differences, they are quite small. This is not the case.
Apartments in Toronto vary from luxury houses and condominiums to apartments in a very neglected state, with bedbugs and other unpleasant surprises.
So if you're looking for something as cheap as possible, be prepared to settle in a disadvantaged area in a low quality apartment. If an accommodation is cheap, it's for a good reason.
Looking for apartments in Toronto - practical steps.
Try to arrive in Toronto 10 days or at least one week before the 1st of the next month. Do not forget that the renting in Canada starts on the 1st day of each month. In the meantime, book a hotel or a hostel.
Decide for yourself what kind of housing you want to rent, and in what area. Also, decide whether you want to rent an apartment in a rental apartment building, or from a private owner (an apartment in a condominium, an apartment in a townhouse, a house or part of the house. Average prices of apartments in rental buildings range from $ 800 to $ 1,300 per month for 1 - 2 bedroom apartments.
Prices for similar apartments in Toronto condominiums range from $ 1,300 to $ 2,000 per month. Renting a townhouse can cost anywhere from $ 1,500 to $ 2,500 per month, depending on its area and location. Renting a whole detached house usually starts at $ 2,000 per month. Basement apartment rentals start at $ 400.
When to start looking for apartments in Toronto
It is best to start looking for apartments in Toronto 60-80 days in advance. Tenants who want to leave an apartment, usually notify the superintendent or the landlord within at least 60 days. Accordingly, the landlords stars looking for new tenants during this period, and by the time the first tenants leave, the landlords have found someone.
This is particularly true for good houses in good areas, with reasonable prices, which almost never have available apartments. Therefore, if possible, start looking in advance, before you arrive to Toronto. Get in touch with a superintendent of the building, or with an owner of a house, so they have you in mind. This is possible if you have friends in Toronto who could rent an apartment for you.
When to Come to Toronto
Timing is everything, and you need to take into account the seasonal nature of demand for housing when you plan your immigration to Toronto. The best months to look for apartments in Toronto are May and June, the worst are August and September.
In the early summer people try to move from one apartment to another, and many apartments become available. They do this during the time when children do not go to school. In the late summer - early autumn, on the contrary, there is an influx of people wishing to rent accommodation.
In particular, there are university and college students that start their studies in September, and start looking for apartments in Toronto. Their studies end in late April - early May, so many apartments become available too.
Then there is an absolutely dead month, such as December, when it's better not to plan anything in Toronto. All these factors must be taken into account, because on how quickly you can find what you need depends on when you arrive and begin your search.
On Apartments in Toronto I used materials written by Helen Riabinin, Sales Representative, Century 21 St.Andrew's Realty Inc. for Russian Toronto.