Determine Your Needs...
5 initial questions to ask yourself
- Do I want a furnished or unfurnished room or apartment?
- How much rent can I afford to pay?
- Is the location suitable? Safe? Are there shops & eating places nearby?
- Is it convenient commuting to campus?
- Do I stay on my own or with one or more roommates?
Choose your roommate(s) carefully. Consider study habits, social habits, lifestyles and living expectations. Discuss all issues and come to a mutual agreement with your prospective roommates before deciding on your living arrangement.
Looking for a Place
- Use the
Off Campus Accommodation System (OCAS)
- Explore opportunities under the university's Public Folders under 'Buy & Sell'/'Rent'
- Go through the
Classified Ads in the newspapers
- Ask friends (grapevine)
- Enlist the help of a property agent
Speak with Prospective Property Owners...
Questions to ask them
- What is the monthly rent?
- When and how is payment made?
- Is a deposit required and how much is it?
- Is the deposit refundable?
- Are utilities -- hot water, electricity, gas, trash -- included in the monthly rental?
- Are pets allowed? -- if so, what type?
- Who is responsible for maintenance and repairs?
- Are you able to sublet and/or add tenant(s) to the lease?
- Are there any additional charges?
- Any special rule that you are required to follow?
As a tenant, ensure that you have a good understanding with your landlord of mutual responsibilities and expectations.
Lease / Moving In and Out - Do's & Don'ts
- Read the entire lease with full understanding before you commit to it.
- Document agreements (repairs, painting, etc.) and ensure that notations of them are signed on all copies of the lease.
- It is advisable to issue a cheque, money order or bank cashier's order for payment.
- If you are making cash payment, ask for a receipt!
- Sign an inventory which lists all the items provided by the landlord.
- Ensure your rights as a tenant are protected and spelt out clearly in the lease.
- Before you move in, inspect for damages with the landlord or property agent in order to avoid any subsequent misunderstanding.
- When you leave at the end of the lease period, request to again make an inspection with the landlord or property agent for any damages.
- With this documentation, you will be assured of claiming your security deposit fully.