Tools for finding your first home as a newcomer to Canada
As a newcomer to Canada, one of the first things you will need to do is find a place for you and your family to call home. For most people new to Canada, your first home may likely be a rented house or apartment.
Where can I find properties to rent?
one of the simplest ways to find housing is to visit neighbourhoods where you would like to live and look for “For Rent” signs on houses or buildings. You can then ask the superintendent if there are any places to rent now or upcoming availabilities.
Other places to apartments or housing to rent include:
- Facebook Marketplace
- Your local library
- Bulletin boards
- Your local immigrant settlement agency (note that these are specifically for permanent residents, protected persons, and some temporary residents).
Where can I look for properties to buy?
- Private real estate agencies
- Kijjiji, Facebook Marketplace, and more can be good ways to find private places that are for sale. While this method does not have any intermediary, it can be risky to do private deals of property without representation.
- Local settlement services
In light of this, new buyers or renters can take several steps to protect themselves, including:
- Never dealing in cash;
- Never entering an agreement without first visiting the property;
- Speaking with current/past tenants if possible;
- Demand a written lease that is in line with your province’s landlord and tenant board; or
- Hire a realtor/representation to make sure that your agreement is legally enforceable and valid.