Finding a house for you and your family as an immigrant to Canada is an important task. You with your family is going to start your new life in that house.
For a new house in Canada you need a place where you and your family can easily adjust. The neighbourhood for your new house also matters. In most cases new Canadians rent their first home.
Canada’s housing market has typically been stable for purchasers and renters, but rising interest rates are lowering prices.
As of 2018, 44% of Canada’s 1,153,400 recent immigrants were living in a privately owned residence, according to the country’s statistical agency. This is below the Canadian-born population average, yet it reflects a large fraction of newcomers who own property within five years of arriving.
New housing policies and economic conditions have made buying property in Canada easier for newcomers, part of a welcoming buying climate. However, the 2018 study found that most newcomers to Canada will rent a home.
Where can I rent?
After deciding what kind of place you want, where you want to reside, and your monthly/yearly housing budget, there are various resources to identify rental properties.
Visit neighbourhoods where you want to live and check for “For Rent” signs on houses or buildings. Ask the superintendent if there are any current or future rentals. For a wide-area rental property search, Google Maps can be used.
Other rental units include:
- Realtor.ca: Searches Canadian properties for sale or rent. Filters can narrow your search by area, price, property type, and more;
- Zumper: Canadian apartment rental platform. Search by location, price, amount of bedrooms, and more;
- PadMapper: Another Canadian apartment-searching platform. It lets you filter by price, bedrooms, and location.
- The classifieds section of the local newspaper or online ad listings show apartment locations on maps. Kijiji has apartments for rent or sale and furnishings and appliances for your new home. Facebook Marketplace, which connects users and communities, is another popular option.
- Local library: Some libraries offer workshops on apartment hunting, lease reading, and more. Online public libraries, bulletin boards at grocery stores, libraries, laundromats, health clinics, community centres, service clubs, and real estate agencies, and your local immigrant settlement agency.
- Many immigrant settlement agencies help permanent residents, protected persons, and some temporary residents find housing, understand their tenant rights and responsibilities, and more.
- To find out what services your city, region, or province offers, do a fast web search. Government-funded portals like Compass to Connect can combine and search settlement programs across Canada.
Where to buy properties?
Newcomers to Canada might use many strategies to buy a property. Common tools:
- Realtor.ca: This site also attracts buyers. Realtors select residential and commercial listings. The site also lists realtors for home searches and purchases.
- Private real estate agencies: hiring a realtor can simplify the home-buying process, but many consumers don’t. Remember that realtors only get paid commission on closed agreements, making them minimal risk;
- Classifieds: Kijjiji, Facebook Marketplace, and others can help you find private properties. Private property deals without representation might be dangerous.
- Local settlement services can help newcomers find homes. Check out Compass to Connect or local settlement services.
What kind of properties are available in Canada?
Canada offers newcomers many rental and permanent housing options. Examples are:
- Apartments: single-family dwellings. Most flats offer one to three bedrooms. “Bachelor” flats mix bedroom and living space;
- Single-family detached: one-unit dwelling on its own lot;
- Duplexes and triplexes: two- or three-unit houses. It is common for owners to occupy one of the units and rent out the rest.
- Townhouse: three or more apartments share walls in a row. These can be stacked to separate the top and bottom floors, or
- Rooms: residences can be separated into bedrooms that renters share kitchens and bathrooms.
How can I find about a scam?
Housing scams are common and Newcomers are especially susceptible to housing fraud. To avoid the scam you should take the note of following:
Phantom rentals—already rented units listed twice—should be avoided whether renting or buying.
Suspicious money or payment demands (Canada often uses cheques or e-transfers); or
No background checks to rent or buy.
New buyers and renters can protect themselves by never dealing in cash, never signing an agreement without inspecting the property, and never dealing in cash. Also they can confirm by contacting current/former tenants; Demand a provincially compliant written lease.
Hiring a realtor/representation to ensure your agreement is legal is also a good option. If hiring a realtor, check their provincial board registration. Verify the realtor’s background by inquiring about their experience, the houses they’ve sold, and the feedback they’ve received from previous customers.
These are some free Canadian resources for newcomers. These resources can help you find a house faster. Always check before renting or buying a house as a newcomer in Canada. You can also take help from your friends or family (if any) who are already in Canada.
- Most immigrants to Canada rent their first house, but many buy within five years.
- Newcomers can buy a home in Canada simpler because to housing policies and economic conditions.
- Neighbourhood tours, classified ads, local libraries, and immigrant settlement agencies are Canadian rental property resources.
- Apartments, duplexes/triplexes, townhouses, and rooms are available throughout Canada.
- Newcomers can avoid housing fraud by avoiding cash transactions, visiting before signing.
- You can hire a qualified broker and get a valid lease for property.