These typical Canadian apartment leasing conditions are important to know and understand, especially for first timers. Whether you are renting your apartment in Vancouver, British Columbia, in Calgary, Alberta or Winnipeg, Manitoba, this guide can help you understand the agreement you are signing.
Landlords like stability. They like to know that they can count on you to stay in one place for a while. That is why, most of the time, you will be signing a one-year lease. Unless you happen to go through the University or College's off-campus housing office, that is. Some landlords will, knowing that many students like to go home for the summer, allow you to sign an eight month lease.
Two months before your lease comes due, it is important to tell your landlord your intent. Would you like to renew your lease? Would you like to end the arrangement? Either way, your landlord needs to know, and if he wishes to end the arrangement, he must also tell you so no less than two months before the end of your lease. This allows you to find a new place to live and him to find a new person to stay where you are now. Whenever he wishes to show the apartment, he must always give you a minimum of twenty four hours' notice so that you have a chance to tidy up and put sensitive or personal things away.
It is possible, sometimes, to sublet an apartment, however, these are pretty rare. Most landlords loathe sublet agreements as they feel that they do not protect them from those who disappear in a midnight move. If you can not complete your lease, some landlords will accept a sublet, however, if your sublet does happen to leave town suddenly, you can be certain that the landlord will come knocking at your door to collect his rent.
If you are in an apartment that requires you to pay for your own heating and electrical usage, it is advisable to try to negotiate an equal billing program with the utilities company. They will likely demand a deposit of up to three hundred dollars and your monthly payment may be up to a hundred and fifty dollars. Be prepared. Budget accordingly.
Always read your agreement carefully, and make certain that you understand which appliances are included in your rent. Most places include a stove and refrigerator. Others might also include a washing machine or a dryer and sometimes even both.
When it comes to general repairs relating to electricity, heat, the appliances and the premises, you can expect that the landlord will be responsible for these. The exception to the rule is where you or your guests have caused damage to be done to the premises through neglect or deliberate action. If you have busted up the plaster walls with your karate kicks, chances are that you will have to foot the bill for the repairs.
Ask your landlord, at the time of signing the lease, whether he is planning to paint the walls and if they allow color on the walls. Some landlords only allow white and will have the place painted before you move in. Others will enter into an agreement with you; if you can provide the labour, they will provide the paint in the color that you choose and they approve. It never hurts to ask.