What Should I Know Before Renting a Place?
What constitutes the best place to live is not the same for everyone, therefore each student’s housing search will be different. Budget, proximity to school, shopping and services, and personal preference all play a role in helping you choose housing. Each situation however shares some commonalities:
- a written contract is the best way to be clear how much you are paying and for what – don’t be afraid to ask for clarification of what is meant by “clean”, or “shared”;
- you should never provide money until you are certain of your decision – rental contracts are usually binding, even if you feel a situation was misrepresented;
- you should always be given a receipt for any money given to the landlord;
- every person has the right to a home that meets minimum health and safety standards. Resources to help you understand your rights are available.
When paying for rent it is best to use a personal cheque, bank draft/bank money order, or online transfers such as Interact bank email money transfers which provide a proof of payment other than a receipt issued by the landlord. Please note that in Canada it is not expected or common for any parties to exchange banking information/bank account numbers. Payments are made through a bank or a service provider without exchanging this type of information between students and landlords. Please never email or text any banking, credit card or personal information directly to anyone.
What to Bring: Please note that bedding (sheets, pillows, blankets) and towels are not provided in rental accommodations. You may want to bring your own or purchase them upon your arrival to Kingston. There may be other items to bring depending on your personal needs.
- Queen’s Student Community Relations assists with lease review before you sign your contract to better understand your rights and responsibilities
- Alma Mater Society (AMS) Housing Tips for Students
- Queen’s Campus Security and Emergency Services
- Kingston Transit has an online trip planner so you can see what transit options are available from different addresses
- Utilities Kingston can provide factual information on average utility costs for any City address
- Queen’s AMS Walkhome safety service to get two student volunteers to walk with you home/to Campus
- Community Legal Education Ontario
- Kingston Property Standards By-Law
- Ontario Landlord and Tenant Board
- Single Gender Housing
- Your House Hunting Checklist
- Your Move-In Checklist
- Common Canadian Housing Terms