Rental Agreements in Canada

Comprehensive Guide to Finding Rental Accommodation for International Students in Canada


Canada, with its world-class educational institutions and multicultural society, is a popular destination for international students. One of the first steps in planning your educational journey in Canada is securing suitable accommodation. This comprehensive guide will provide you with detailed insights into average rent prices in major Canadian cities and valuable tips on how to find the perfect rental.

Average Rent Prices in Major Canadian Cities

Understanding the average rent prices in popular student cities across Canada is crucial when considering renting a place. Here are the approximate average monthly rental costs for a one-bedroom apartment in some major Canadian cities:


Toronto, the largest city in Canada, offers a vibrant cultural scene and numerous educational institutions. The average monthly rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Toronto ranges from $2,100 to $2,600. Shared accommodations can be a more affordable option, with costs ranging from $1,000 to $1,200. Basement apartments are available at an average price of $1,600 to $2,000.



Vancouver, renowned for its scenic beauty and diverse population, is a sought-after destination for international students. The average monthly rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Vancouver can vary between $2,200 and $2,700. Shared accommodations in Vancouver can range from $1,000 to $1,200, while basement apartments typically range from $1,500 to $2,000.


Montreal, a bilingual city with a rich cultural heritage, is home to several renowned universities. The average monthly rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Montreal ranges between $1,100 to $1,600. Shared accommodations in Montreal can cost between $600 and $1,000, providing a cost-effective option for students. Basement apartments are also available, with average rents ranging from $1,000 to $1,400.


Calgary, situated in the province of Alberta, offers a vibrant blend of urban living and stunning natural landscapes. The average monthly rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Calgary is around $1,300 to $1,600. Shared accommodations in Calgary can range from $600 to $900, while basement apartments are available at an average cost of $1,100 to $1,500.

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As Canada’s capital, Ottawa boasts excellent educational institutions and a high quality of life. The average monthly rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Ottawa ranges from $1,300 to $1,700. Shared accommodations in Ottawa can cost between $600 and $1,000, providing affordable options for students. Basement apartments are also available, with average rents ranging from $900 to $1,400.

How to Find a Rental Place

Now that we have an overview of average rent prices, let’s delve into the process of finding a suitable rental place in Canada.

Start your search early

Begin your accommodation search well in advance, preferably three to four months before your intended move-in date. This will give you ample time to explore different options and secure a place that meets your requirements.

Utilize online resources

Take advantage of various online platforms dedicated to rental listings, such as Facebook Marketplace, Kijiji, and These platforms can significantly expand your rental search and increase your chances of finding the perfect accommodation.

Seek assistance from your educational institution


Many educational institutions have dedicated portals or websites where landlords post listings exclusivelyfor students. Reach out to the housing or international student services office at your university or college. They can provide valuable resources and guidance on finding suitable accommodations, including recommendations for reputable landlords or housing options on or near campus.

Consider shared accommodations

Renting a room in a shared apartment or house can be cost-effective, especially for students on a tight budget. It also provides an opportunity to meet and connect with fellow students.

Understand the rental market and terms

Familiarize yourself with the local rental market, including lease terms, tenant rights, and any specific regulations that may apply. It’s important to carefully read and understand the terms and conditions of your lease agreement before signing.

Budget wisely

When searching for a rental place, consider your budget and prioritize your needs. Consider not only the rent but also other expenses like utilities, internet, and transportation costs.

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Schedule viewings and ask questions

Arrange in-person or virtual viewings of potential rental properties. During the viewing, inspect the premises, and ask questions about amenities, lease terms, and maintenance responsibilities. Don’t hesitate to clarify any concerns before committing to a rental agreement.

Understanding Rental Agreements in Canada

When you’ve found a potential rental property, it’s essential to understand the rental agreement before signing. In Canada, rental agreements can be either verbal or written, but a written lease provides a record that can be referred to if any disputes arise.

Key Elements of a Rental Agreement

A standard rental agreement in Canada should include:

  • The names of the tenant(s) and landlord
  • The address of the rental property
  • The term of the lease (e.g., month-to-month, one year, etc.)
  • The amount of rent and when it is due
  • What is included in the rent (e.g., utilities, parking, etc.)
  • Rules about pets, smoking, and other restrictions
  • Conditions for ending the lease

Tenant Rights and Responsibilities

As a tenant in Canada, you have certain rights and responsibilities. These may vary slightly by province, but generally include:

  • The right to peaceful enjoyment of the property
  • The right to a safe and habitable living environment
  • The responsibility to pay rent on time
  • The responsibility to keep the property clean and undamaged

Tips for a Successful Rental Experience

To ensure a successful rental experience in Canada, consider the following tips:

Communicate Openly with Your Landlord

Maintain open and respectful communication with your landlord. If you have concerns or issues, address them promptly and professionally.

Respect Your Neighbours

Living in close proximity to others requires consideration and respect. Keep noise levels down, especially during quiet hours, and be mindful of shared spaces.

Take Care of the Property

Treat the rental property as if it were your own. Keep it clean, report any damages promptly, and follow the rules set out in your lease agreement.

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Renting a suitable place as an international student in Canada can seem daunting, but with careful research and planning, it can be a smooth process. By understanding the average rent prices in major Canadian cities and utilizing various resources, you can find an ideal rental that meets your needs and budget. Remember to start your search early, ask for assistance from your educational institution, and consider shared accommodations if necessary. With these tips in mind, you can embark on your educational journey in Canada with confidence and peace of mind.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are the average rent prices mentioned for one-bedroom apartments inclusive of utilities?

The average rent prices mentioned for one-bedroom apartments in major Canadian cities generally do not include utilities unless specified. It’s important to inquire with the landlord or property management to understand what is included in the rent and what additional utility costs you may need to cover.

Is it possible to find furnished rentals for international students in Canada?

Yes, it is possible to find furnished rentals for international students in Canada, particularly in major student cities. Some landlords offer fully furnished apartments or rooms, while others may provide the option to rent furniture or offer partially furnished spaces. When searching for rentals, you can specify your preference for furnished accommodations to narrow down your options.

What are some common lease terms for rental agreements in Canada?

Rental lease terms in Canada can vary, but the most common options are month-to-month leases or fixed-term leases, typically for one year. Month-to-month leases offer more flexibility as you can terminate the lease with proper notice, while fixed-term leases provide stability for a specific period. It’s important to carefully review the lease agreement, understand the terms and conditions, and clarify any concerns before signing.

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