It might seem like a lot of questions but it's better to do your homework now then after you are committed to a lease.

Rental Checklist

(Questions to Ask Yourself and the Landlord)

  • How much is the rent?
  • Does the rent include all utilities? (If no, do you have to set up your own accounts with the companies - Gas, Hydro, Internet)
  • What type of heating method is used? (Gas($), Oil($$), Baseboard heaters($$$))
  • Does the tenant have control over heating/air-conditioning?
  • Are overnight guests allowed?
  • Are pets allowed?
  • Where is the fuse box/breaker box located?
  • Are there working laundry facilities on the premises or are they located nearby?
  • Are the laundry facilities coin-operated?
  • Is a fridge/stove/microwave provided in working order?
  • Is it close to public transport?
  • Reasonable travel time to campus?
  • Are there grocery stores, pharmacy and other amenities nearby?

Quality of Accommodation

  • Is there sufficient cupboard/closet space?
  • How many people share the bathroom/kitchen or fridge with you?
  • Will moving in and out be difficult because of stairs?
  • Is there any evidence of pests (e .g . cockroaches, mice)?
  • Is the carpet/floor reasonably clean?
  • Are the walls in good repair (paint chipping, holes etc.)?
  • Is the water pressure adequate? (Turn on the tap in the bathroom at full blast then flush the toilet. Look back at the tap and look for any difference in the pressure.)
  • Is there a good supply of hot water (ask current tenants)?
  • Are there sufficient electrical outlets (check for three prong/grounded plugs)?

Safety

  • Do you feel comfortable in the neighbourhood daytime and nighttime?
  • Does the room/apartment have adequate locks to provide privacy and security?
  • If the apartment has a security system (buzzer or key), is it working?
  • Are all windows intact and lockable?
  • Are there smoke/carbon monoxide detectors in key areas?
  • Is there more than one fire exit from the unit?
  • Is there a working fire extinguisher in the kitchen?
  • Is the entrance well lit and are any shrubs well trimmed?
  • Who has access to the house key and when were the locks last changed?

Responsibilities

  • Are you responsible for shoveling snow and is there a snow shovel provided?
  • Are you responsible for lawn maintenance and is there a lawn mower provided?
  • Are there adequate garbage containers provided and when is garbage picked up?