Finding Affordable off-Campus Housing
Finding housing during your post-secondary career can be a serious challenge – especially in major cities. Competing with hundreds of thousands of people for a very limited amount of housing isn’t easy, to say the least. Even worse, all that competition means that you are probably going to have to pay a higher price than what you might have been expecting. Fortunately, there are a few things you can do to save both you and your wallet some stress.
If you haven’t already heard of it, view.it is a website that allows you to browse for rentals within a specified area. You can filter and refine your search so you are only viewing rentals that match your price range and what you are looking for. This is a great tool (and one that I’ve used) for finding places that match your criteria. Even better, you can often take virtual tours of the property, or at least see some pretty in-depth pictures. It’s real-time, so you are only viewing rentals that are available. This website has been getting pretty popular recently, so you have to be quick. Make sure that you’re ready to move and have all the necessary funds/paperwork while you’re looking, just in case you see “the one” and have to snag it quickly.
Move out with friends
This one has to do more with your wallet than your rental. Moving out with friends can save you A LOT of money. Three bedroom apartments are significantly less expensive per bedroom than one or two bedrooms, and that price difference only increases the bigger the place. Moving out with some of your friends is a great way to save money and have fun. If that isn’t an option, consider searching on kijiji, craigslist, or another similar website for people looking for roommates, or post an ad yourself. Remember to always use discretion though, because at the end of the day they’re going to be strangers at first. Either way, however, moving out with one or more people can save you a significant sum of money.
This one might seem a little strange, but living in a hostel during your semester isn’t actually all that crazy. Lots of hostels turn into student housing during the semester, and they usually offer really good rates too. At some hostels, however, you might have to do some volunteer community service, but it usually isn’t more than a couple hours a month. Plus, this is a great way to meet people that you might want to move out with later. The only downside to this is that it isn’t exactly a permanent residence, but it’s perfect for those who go back home after the semester.
Finding a place to live is hard – really, really hard. It’s way easier to talk about than to do it. However, with diligence, commitment, and enough money, there’s no reason that you shouldn’t be able to snag that dream rental.