02 November 2011 ~ 0 Comments

Ways to score cheap rent in Ontario

These are hard times and, for most people, keeping a roof over one’s head is the single biggest monthly or weekly expense. If you live in a big city like Ottawa or Toronto, how do you keep your rent as low as possible?

Firstly, select cheaper neighbourhoods when searching for your Ottawa or Toronto rental. You’ll have to balance priorities because less desirable parts of town may have high crime rates, or poor transport facilities. The further you live from downtown, the cheaper rent is likely to be, but you will have to weigh this against the costs of commuting.

Another way of reducing the burden of rent is to find a room-mate; however this is not a viable solution for everyone.

If you’re already in an Ottawa or Toronto rental when financial disaster strikes – say loss of a job, or a reduction in hours – then what should you do? Experts acknowledge that it is very hard to renegotiate your rent in mid-lease. But if you are an exemplary tenant and have a kind-hearted landlord, there is a slight chance you could barter with them for a rent reduction. Depending on your skills, you could offer professional services or maintenance work in exchange for a rent reduction.

An article on http://realestate.msn.com cites an example of a tenant who got a reduction in rent by giving his landlord Internet access through his Wi-Fi connection!

If you’re hoping for a reduction, no increase or only the smallest possible rent rise when your lease is up for renewal, you need to work hard on the relationship with your landlord. Remember that, for a landlord, clean, quiet, tidy reliable tenants are worth their weight in gold. So make sure that description fits you. It is then in your landlord’s interest to keep you and you are in a position of negotiating strength. Be savvy and aware of the state of the Ottawa or Toronto rental market, whichever applies. If the state of the economy means there are more rental apartments on offer than tenants to fill them, then your chances of negotiating a good deal are that much greater.

Image By: Fernando A. Cuenca

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