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Student Accommodation Guide for Canada Universities

Last updated: 1 February 2023 Accommodation

There are many benefits for international students who wish to study in Canada including fantastic universities and colleges, great courses, and state-of-the-art facilities.

When deciding to study in Canada, it is important to check what kind of accommodation and housing is right for you. Many accommodation options are available, with perks and advantages attached to all. When deciding to zero in on the type of housing you would like to take, it is crucial to consider your specific needs and what each option offers, and then finally go for the one you want the most.

The two major types of accommodation options are on-campus housing and off-campus housing. Both have different settings available, and students can choose the one according to their budget and other needs.

If you want to study in Canada and need help with course, college, university or accommodation selection, arrange a free consultation with SI-Canada today.

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Types of Student Housing in Canada

On-campus housing

Most universities and colleges have housing facilities available right on the campus grounds. This type of housing is known as living in residence, and most first-year students choose to live on campus. This makes them connect with fellow students and save time and money on transportation and sometimes on cooking, as many student residences have a meal plan included in the arrangement.

The categories of housing on campus can have shared accommodation in a dorm-style option or an apartment with rooms given to separate students that can have a shared bathroom. This costs less than individual housing in a single-room or studio apartment.

On-campus housing benefits

On-campus housing costs

The costs for on-campus housing vary by the institution's size, location, and amenities provided. Nonetheless, it is a popular option among international students, and applications for the same must be made sooner, as few seats are available. If you want to live on campus, you should contact the student housing department of the university as soon as you get your acceptance letter.

Off-campus housing

Students who wish to have a more private living space and want to explore the local area can choose to stay in off-campus housing. The variety of options available in private rentals is comprehensive, and they also have different price ranges according to the facilities involved. Private accommodation in larger cities like Vancouver and Toronto is much higher than the smaller towns.

Off-campus housing benefits

The most common types of off-campus housing include one-bedroom apartments, shared houses, and apartments.

Off-campus housing costs

Usually, a lease is signed between the student and the owner of the property that can include your first and last month’s rent and a security deposit, which is refundable if you have not caused any damage to the property. Before signing the lease papers, you should visit the site, look for the area, and enquire about the facilities and other terms and conditions.

You may want to consider aspects such as the availability of amenities like food, WiFi, the cost of transportation to the university, and expected expenses to determine the final amount that a private rental space will need from your end.

You can look for private rental options at Kijiji, Craigslist, and Facebook Student Resident Groups of the university. 

Homestay with a Canadian family

For students below the age of 19, most Canadian institutions require them to stay in homestays if they cannot get on-campus housing. A homestay is staying with a family local to the area which provides 1-3 deals per day and other facilities such as laundry, heating, and WiFi with the initial agreement. Homestay networks in Canada include:

Homestay costs

A homestay can cost between $600 and $1000 per month.

Study in Canada

Do you want to study in Canada or need help securing accommodation? Arrange a free consultation with SI-Canada and speak to our expert support team.

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Increase your chances of success when applying

SI-Canada specializes in selecting the right Canadian university or college for international students by reviewing your academic background, discussing your career goals and helping you apply. Our application services can help you achieve your dream of studying in Canada.

"Everything was explained well to me by Vidushi. There was a 100% transparency in everything and Vidushi was highly responsive throughout the process making it smooth and hassle free for me. Rahul from the Visa team also was really patient in the entire process and made sure I understood and get things done timely."

Amanpreet KaurInternational Business Management (May 2024 intake)

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