Houses

Students often choose to live in houses because it allows them to live with a group of friends and they do not have to worry as much about noise as people living in apartments.

This is especially useful for students who play loud instruments such as the drums or the saxophone. Some of the drawbacks to living in a house are:

  • The number of people that you will have to share a kitchen or bathroom with
  • Loss of privacy
  • You can be held responsible for the actions of your roommates

Renting a House

Renting a house is a popular option for students living off-campus. Students will generally find 3-5 roommates and collectively lease an entire house.

Renting a Townhouse

Renting a townhouse is halfway between renting an apartment and renting a house. Noise is not as much of an problem in a townhouse as in an apartment because there are not tenants above and below you, but it is more a a problem than in a house because you still share walls with your neighbours. Townhouses are generally designed for more people than an apartment but less than a house. If you are looking for a middle of the road option you should consider renting a townhouse.

Renting a Room in a House

Renting a room in a house is probably the cheapest and easiest way to live off campus but it comes with its fair share of problems as well. There are several ways to rent a room in a house. Sometimes you are renting a room in the home of the owner. In this instance meals are sometimes included, making the experience similar to living at home with your parents. Sometimes you live in a house where all the rooms are rented out separately and the landlord maintains the common areas.

Benefits of renting a room in a house include:

  • Only responsible for your room
  • Generally cheaper rent
  • Meals sometimes included
  • Very little maintenance
  • It can be kind of like living with your parents
  • As of April 2010, Roomers and Boarders now have some protection through the Residential Tendencies Act and the Rentalsman has jurisdiction to assist roomers/boarders and their landlords for information and help with rental issues that may arise.

Disadvantages include:

  • Less autonomy than the other options
  • It can be kind of like living with your parents

Buying a House

One thing that students sometimes do is buy a house, rent out the other rooms, and sell the house when they graduate. This option requires a mortgage, which few students qualify for, so it is usually only available to students who can find a co-signer. Owning a house and renting out the other rooms can be financially rewarding but it is also a considerable amount of work. You will have to act as the landlord for your tenants.