7 challenges tenants in Canada can relate to

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This Opinion article is part of a Narcity Media series. The opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Narcity Media.

Housing in Canada can be a major pain, and this is especially the case if you don’t own your home.

Not only are the cost of rent rising in major cities, there are a host of other issues that renters in Canada have to deal with on a regular basis.

In fact, anyone who has ever rented a home, or is currently renting, knows that not owning your own home comes with its own set of problems and dramas.

Whether it’s having a boring roommate – or worse, a boring landlord – or living in a place with weird and quirky decorations and features, chances are you’ll identify with these struggles of lease.

Waiting forever for things to be fixed

Has an outlet stopped working? Maybe a drain is clogged? Or worse, maybe you saw a mouse?

Well, be prepared to wait because chances are your landlord will take their time to deal with it.

Most renters know what it’s like to have an away landlord, which can be nice until something needs fixing.

Maybe if you text them one more time, they’ll eventually take care of it…

Living with roommates

You don’t always have the option of choosing your roommates. Sometimes it’s just a random stranger you now have to navigate and plan your life with.

But, because of the rental world, you also have to argue about things like the temperature, household chores, and when you spend alone time with your partner.

And that’s the best case scenario!

Dealing with Random Oddities

Almost every rental, unless it’s brand new, has at least one weird thing about it.

But, if you’re unlucky (or lucky, depending on how you see it), your place could be really weird.

Painted outlets, switches that don’t do anything, low ceilings, wayward old appliances, and design features that only made sense in the 1970s. At some point, you just have to learn to love them!

Rent increases

Obviously, this one sucks.

Anyone who has lived in a rental dreads this annual increase. And those maximum annual rent increases can start to add up if you’ve been living in the same place for a while.

Also, on a more basic level, it’s really hard to remember your rent when the 2% increases have given it a few decimal places.

No room for customization

If you own your home, you don’t have to ask permission to put up shelves, drive nails, or paint the walls.

But, if you are a tenant, you basically have to deal with whatever has been given to you.

While some landlords may be more generous and allow for certain changes, most tenants know the difficulty of making do with what you have.

Looks like those off-white yellow walls are here to stay!

The fear of going home

Depending on where you live, the fear of having to go home with your family due to the high price of everything can be real.

This is especially the case in places like Vancouver and Toronto, where the cost of rent is already extremely high.

As those rent payments eat into your savings, you might start to wonder, “Okay, what’s the best way to tell the parents I need to come home?”

fight for space

Another downside of having a roommate is how to live together as two adults who need (and want) their own space.

Because at the end of the day, common areas aren’t yours alone and you have to compromise.

You have to make room for them in the bathroom, kitchen and more, which can be particularly tricky, especially if you have different ideas about general hygiene and cleanliness.

Having a roommate is also a constant struggle to find personal space.

And when you finally get it, it’s usually pretty fleeting!

So, this is for all tenants: stay strong in the fight!

And, if you’re looking to climb a few rungs on the real estate ladder, the government has put in place many initiatives to help the first-time home buyer in Canada.

If you’re not there yet and are still struggling as a tenant, just know that you could get up to $500 towards your housing expenses in 2022.

The cover image of this article was used for illustrative purposes only.

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