House Hunting Tips

Permanent accommodation in Saskatchewan may require you to provide the landlord with more information compared to when getting temporary accommodation. For instance, It is the norm for landlords to request for character references and documents proving your financial ability to pay rent. Before you go house-hunting, you might want to be informed about the do’s and don’ts of landlords and tenants in Saskatchewan.

As a newcomer, you should also be aware of leases agreement. In Saskatchewan, there are three types of leases or tenancy agreements:

  • Month-to-Month Tenancy: These leases are renewed on a month-to-month basis. Termination must be preceded by an advanced notice period.
  • Weekly Tenancy: These leases are renewed on a weekly basis.
  • Fixed-Term Tenancy: Leases of this nature are only applicable for a fixed period of time, such as 6 months or 1 year and they cannot be terminated before that period.

Let’s take a look at some questions that should serve as a yardstick for your home leasing decision.

  • How much is the rent?
  • Is it a month-to-month tenancy or fixed term?
  • Does the landlord plan any rent increases?
  • How much is the damage or security deposit?
  • Is it clean and in good repair?
  • Have there been any reports of infestations or rodent activity?
  • Is it suitable for the number of occupants?
  • Who pays the utilities?
  • What is the usual monthly cost of the utilities?
  • Are there extra charges for parking or more storage?
  • What is the policy regarding pets?
  • Is smoking allowed in the rental unit?
  • Is growing cannabis allowed in the rental unit?
  • What appliances does the landlord provide?
  • Are the appliances, plumbing, and wiring in good working condition?
  • Is there a working smoke detector?
  • Is the apartment conveniently located?

You are likely to have other questions of your own as it applies to you/your family situation, make sure to have all your questions answered. Talking to previous or current tenants may provide you with information about the property you are interested in. As a tenant, you may

  • request the names and contact information of previous or current tenants from the landlord.
  • Offer a lower rent than what is being requested or try to negotiate other terms

Documents that may be requested include:

  • References from previous landlords
  • Most recent or current employment letter to show Income
  • Bank statements to show enough funds if unemployed
  • Credit report to show credit history

Landlords in Saskatchewan generally prefer Canadian documentation before leasing/renting an apartment and as newcomers with little or no prior history, It may be difficult to get a landlord willing to rent to newcomers. Notwithstanding, you would still be able to get the apartment of your choice if you keep trying.