Movin’ on up and out
Can you afford that sweet bachelor pad?
Between university and work, the daunting task of finding a place to live can seem like too much to handle, even if you can’t stand living at home. Considering a few helpful hints before you start looking for the right place can help lighten the load just a bit.
Lykera Syrnick, a business student at Mount Royal University, has started to look into moving out of her parent’s home and in with her sister.
Syrnick said some of the more important things to think about include: what you’re able to pay in rent each month, whether utilities are included and the locations you’re willing to consider.
When deciding where to live, a good place to start is to figure out what your budget looks like. Calgary is not a cheap place to live. Understanding where you are in terms of your potential expenses will let you know if you should even begin to look.
Besides phone, Internet, cable and utilities, a major expense you don’t want to forget is how much you will need to spend on food each month. Eating is potentially one of the larger costs, and your grocery bill and could make or break your budget.
After you’ve sorted out if you actually can afford to move, transportation will become a main factor in your final location choice.
If you’re unable to afford the costs that come along with owning your own car, getting a place close to transit with a favourable commute time will narrow down your options. This has the potential to be either really good, or really bad.
Aside from your budget and location, you need to consider if you’re going to be able to constantly work in addition to going to school to cover your monthly costs. Falling behind on your bills or your schoolwork is not a great idea just for a little extra personal space.
Deeanna White, a psychology student at Mount Royal University, is currently living on her own with her eight-year-old son and renting through the Calgary Housing Company.
Calgary Housing is a great idea for those who are finding it hard to rent with children and lower incomes; however, there is a wait to enlist their help and getting onto that list could be a little tricky.
White cautions those currently looking to rent to know their rights and having a backup fund for emergencies.
“Don’t take any crap from your landlords,” White said.
Reading over the information provided to renters through www.servicealberta.ca will help prospective renters understand what their rights are. Landlords may take advantage of you if they realize you don’t understand what’s legal and what isn’t.
Once you’ve found your dream rental property, the lease will be the next thing you need to deal with. Read it over carefully and make sure you fully understand everything before you sign it. Also, doing an initial walkthrough of the property with your landlord will help you get your full damage deposit back when you decide to move out.
Whether you’re renting for the first time or you’re a seasoned renter, make sure you cover all your bases so you’re not left out in the cold.