Tips for students living off-campus

Insurance

Tenant insurance

Tenant insurance insures your personal belongings in the event of theft, fire or flood, allowing you to file a claim with your insurance company to replace your lost belongings.

Liability insurance

Consider liability insurance: if you or a guest cause damage or destruction to your rental, the landlord's insurance company could seek payment from any tenant or guarantor on the lease.

Liability and tenant insurance can be found for under $20/month; prices will range depending on your coverage.

How to get insured

  • As a UNB student, you can receive preferred rates on tenant insurance through the TD Insurance Meloche Monnex Program. Get a quote online.
  • Call a few insurance companies for quotes. If you have car insurance, that same provider may give you a discount for bundling insurance products.
  • Ask your parent/guardian to find out if their home insurance policy will cover your things at your rental unit. You may already be covered by their existing policy. If not, you may be eligible for a preferred rate.
  • Take photos and write down serial numbers of all valuable items (e.g., jewelry, electronics, etc.). Store these photos and information in a location other than your rental accommodation.

Security deposit

A security deposit is an amount of money paid at the start of a tenancy to cover damages, unpaid rent, cleaning costs, or unpaid utilities at the end of a lease.

In New Brunswick, tenants pays the deposit directly to the province's Residential Tenancies Tribunal and apply to receive it back at the end of the tenancy. If the landlord submits a claim for part or all of the security deposit, the Residential Tenancies Tribunal will decide if the claim is valid and deduct that money from the tenant’s deposit.

Other costs to consider

  • All-inclusive lease vs. non-inclusive
  • Utilities: power, heat, water/sewer, internet, TV
  • Pet fees
  • Laundry: coin-operated or free
  • Security deposit
  • Appliances: included or not
  • Parking: included or not
  • Distance: will you drive, walk, or take public transit to school?

Choosing a roommate

Your choice of roommate(s) is something that will have a huge effect on your living experience. You will have to share a space with these people for a year, so you need to make sure that you can all coexist peacefully for that time.

Important things to consider in a potential roommate:

  • Ability to pay the rent and utilities on time
  • Tolerance for mess
  • Sleep schedule
  • Smoking
  • Pets: Many places do not allow pets, or charge an additional fee

What happens if my roommate does not pay their portion of the rent?

If all tenants have signed the same lease and the rent is not paid in full, all tenants can be evicted, even if their portion of the rent has been paid.

Resolving landlord-tenant disputes

The Residential Tenancies Act allows for procedural recourse for both the tenant and the landlord should the other not meet their obligations. Procedural recourse means having a clearly defined way to have your problems heard and addressed. This recourse is through the Residential Tenancies Tribunal.