Finding rental accommodations can be a little daunting, and SAITSA understand this, so if you have any questions, contact us. Finding the right accommodation can make all the difference to your experience as a student at SAIT.
How to Start Looking for Accommodation
- Decide if you want to & can afford to live alone. If you will be living with roommates, figure out who you can live with and how many people you are willing to share a space with.
- Where do you want to live? Off-Campus? In SAIT Residence?
- Sign up for ‘New Listing Alerts’, so you’re notified of new properties as soon as they are listed.
- Be prepared to respond to new rental ads immediately – the rental market is tight and vacancies don’t last long!
- Make sure the rental is legitimate and that you aren’t going to be the victim of a rental scam. Read more about this on CBC.CA.
- View as many properties as possible. Take the SAITSA RENTAL CHECK LIST and the STUDENT FIRE SAFETY CHECKLIST to help you decide if the rental is safe and right for you.
- Check out how safe the neighbourhood is with the Calgary Police Service HERE.
- Be prepared to submit background and/or credit checks.
- Have a cosigner (like your parents) ready, in case your landlord requests on to sign on the lease.
- Have a list of references ready. If you don’t have any rental history, then job or character references are the next best thing.
- Ask questions – how long were the previous tenants there? Did the landlord have issues with them? Does the landlord have specific expectations of their renters?
- Once you have made your choice, keep calm and do not rush into signing the contract. Make sure it is the right place for you.
Choosing a Roommate(s)
- Think carefully about who you want to live with – a wrong choice can ruin your year and it is difficult to get out of a lease once it’s signed!
- Are you a neat freak? Make sure you talk about dividing house chores, before you move in.
- If you are not a party person, make sure you chose quiet roommates and vice versa.
- Do you want to share with a couple? Break-ups aren’t fun for those involved, and can be extra uncomfortable for a roommate sharing the space.
- Remember that living together can be stressful sometimes, but can always be dealt with if you have patience and a sense of humour.
Once you have found a rental you are happy with, what happens next?
You will be expected to sign a contract (month to month or a term lease), and pay the damage deposit. Don’t be rushed or pressurized into this.
- Make sure before signing the contract that everyone understands it, and knows what it means. The contract should make sense and be easy to understand.
Once you have signed your Tenancy Agreement
- Get tenants insurance! We can’t stress this enough. Your belongings are not covered by the landlords insurance. Rental insurance is cheap and well worth the few dollars a month it costs.
For a list of insurance companies offering tenants insurance in Alberta CLICK HERE.
USEFUL LINKS FOR RENTERS