6 things I learned from my hellish Vancouver apartment-hunting experience

This opinion piece 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 Vancouver is no jokeso if you make the decision to move to the west coast like me, beware.

I moved to BC over a year ago and have moved to Vancouver three times. So I have a lot of experience finding apartments in the city. Not only is it expensivebut it’s just hard to find rentals in the first place.

I moved from New Brunswick to Vancouver last September, just when all the students and families were moving too. It made for a difficult experience trying to find an apartment. Honestly, I feel like the majority of my year has been spent browsing rental sites.

It was worth it because I loved every place I ended up.

Fortunately, I work from home so I can be flexible about the neighborhood I live in. Still, it was a crazy trip filled with too many Craigslist ads and apartment viewings.

Here’s what I learned along the way, so you can save yourself the headache I had to endure.

Is it difficult to find an apartment in Vancouver?

It’s hard to find an apartment in Vancouver, honestly.

If you’re moving into town, you should be prepared to search for a while before finding a place. Landlords often need a lot of information before they approve you, and you also need to act quickly because they likely have a lot of people asking to live there.

It’s a time commitment, so be prepared!

How to find an apartment in Vancouver?

If you’re looking for an apartment in Vancouver, you should search online every day for rentals starting at least two months before you want to move in.

To increase your chances of getting a spot, be sure to send informative messages with information about yourself. I was sending long emails every day to apartment listings!

I haven’t always had a response, but when I did, it was in my information-filled emails.

Which Website is Best for Apartment Finding?

Craigslist is a go-to place for BC home rentals, but beware of scams on websites like this. Every once in a while I see someone posting that they got scammed on Craigslist.

Facebook Marketplace is also a great place to look too.

I spent so much time wasting my time on Kijiji because that’s where the accommodations are posted on the East Coast and I couldn’t find anything there.

How do you prepare for the apartment search?

To prepare for an apartment hunt, make sure you’ve figured out your budget, the neighborhood you want to live in, and what you’re willing to compromise because you might have to.

In Vancouver, prices vary a lot by neighborhood, so make sure you understand where you want to live. I was looking in a ton of areas when I started, and narrowing it down would have helped a lot.

Are apartments in Vancouver expensive?

The biggest compromise you might have to make is how much you pay to rent in Vancouver. If you are used to rental prices in Alberta, for example, you will have to adjust.

West Vancouver notably has some of the highest real estate prices in Canada.

When I went from paying rent in New Brunswick to Vancouver, it certainly came as a shock to my bank account.

Which part of Vancouver is the best live?

Depending on what you like, there are plenty of great neighborhoods in Vancouver. North Vancouver is close to many hiking and nature trails, while Downtown is very convenient.

Other neighborhoods like Kitsilano and Mount Pleasant are also amazing.

If you want to save some money, go a little out of town in the Richmond area.

To be honest, I wish I had understood what each neighborhood had to offer before moving and chose carefully based on my interests!


#learned #hellish #Vancouver #apartmenthunting #experience

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