5 Tips On Rent in Vancouver for Working Holidays

July 10, 2018
Posted in Working Holiday

5 Tips On Rent in Vancouver for Working Holidays

It can be super exciting when you finally land in Canada and begin your Working Holiday adventure! However, you’ll eventually realize something important amongst all the excitement – you need a place to live! Although our Working Holiday programs have optional add-ons including homestay accommodation, some of our participants prefer to find their own place during their Working Holiday in Canada. We can understand and appreciate this, which is why we decided to gather some information to help you with your search. Depending on how long you’re planning to stay in Canada, it shouldn’t be too difficult to find rent in Vancouver. If you’ve decided to have your Working Holiday in Vancouver, then you’re in luck because we’re going to give you 5 tips on how to rent in Vancouver for your Working Holiday in Canada! We also have an extended version of this article with more tips and useful information for you to check out! Read on to learn more!

Tip #1 – Look For Places Online

It can be difficult to find a place to rent in Vancouver on a Working Holiday when you’re not familiar with the area or if you’re trying to search for accommodation before you even arrive in Canada. Instead of looking through newspapers or using agents, our best advice would be to use the Internet to your advantage. Some good sites to look into for rental ad postings include (but are not limited to, of course):

Rent Hello Quoloc
Kijiji Padmapper
Craigslist Rent BC


Another good website for those looking for roommates to share a room with would be: easyroommate.

Note: Also use social media to your advantage and look on sites such as Facebook. There are many rental or roommate groups on Facebook that you can join and look through. We have listed 2 popular groups below, but there are many more out there. Not only do these groups post rental ads or roommate requests, but they also have tips and comments from other newcomers to Vancouver and it will be helpful to have a place to read relevant advice and also ask your questions.

For Rent Vancouver (Facebook group) Rooms & Roommates in Vancouver (Facebook group)


While you are looking for a place to live, you may be temporarily staying at a hostel or hotel during your search. What we recommend at Stepwest is Airbnb, where you’ll be able to find more cost-effective temporary accommodation.

Tip #2 – Familiarize Yourself With Ad Abbreviations & Areas of Vancouver

You’ll find that many of the ads that you come across online are written with abbreviations. Those can be a bit confusing, especially if you’ve never rented accommodation while on a Working Holiday before or if English isn’t your native language. You can familiarize yourself by looking into rental ad abbreviation glossaries online or via our extended version of this article.

After familiarizing yourself with rental ad abbreviations, you should also get a general sense of the different areas in the city. Are you aware of the right places to rent in Vancouver? The neighbourhoods west of Main Street are considered ‘West Vancouver’ and those that are east of Main Street are considered ‘East Vancouver.’ Almost all neighbourhoods are good for renting, depending on your budget. The only area you may wish to avoid would be the Downtown Eastside, where there are higher rates of homelessness.


Tip #3 – Look During The Right Time Of Day

Yes, there is actually a “right” time of day to be looking for places to rent! Generally, it’s better to look in the early mornings or later in the evenings (after work) because that’s when most people will be posting their ads. Make sure you always call to set up a visit so you can go see the place before you agree to anything. Be sure to secure your visit ASAP, since good deals in Vancouver are gone very quickly!

Tip #4 – Never Send Money Online

It can be very tempting to send money over to someone online if you’ve found a particularly nice place to rent in Vancouver and you don’t want to miss out on a good deal. It might seem like a good idea, because it can be hard to find good deals if you’re only staying for a short amount of time on your Working Holiday in Canada. However, proceed with caution here. As a general rule, never send a stranger money online in order to secure your rent. There are many scammers online that will ask for your money, and then will disappear afterward with no trace. Make sure you see the place first and make sure that you make payments via a traceable method (ie. no cash), such as a cheque or credit card transaction.

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Tip #5 – Know Your Rights & Responsibilities As A Tenant

A damage deposit is required by your landlord in order for you to rent in Vancouver. Your deposit cannot be more than half of your first month’s rent and can only be requested at the beginning before you move in. You are able to get your deposit back at the end of your stay when you finish your Working Holiday in Canada and move out, providing that you haven’t damaged anything. Make sure to do a walkthrough when you arrive at the apartment with the landlord and note down (take pictures with your phone) all the things that are already damaged so you don’t get into a dispute when you leave.

When your landlord gives you the lease to sign, make sure it is actually in the format that is designated by the BC Residential Tenancy Act. You can find a copy of what the lease should look like on the BC government website found here. You can refer to the BC Residential Tenancy website if you are having problems or would like more information on the law regarding renting in Vancouver.


And that’s it! Five of the most essential things that we think you need to know before you rent in Vancouver for your Working Holiday in Canada. Of course, there is more information out there so please be sure to do your research and familiarize yourself with your rights and responsibilities as a tenant. For those that are interested in getting more information, we have an extended version of this article, which can be found here.

Ready to start YOUR Working Holiday in Canada? Stepwest offers Working Holiday City Jobs or Working Holiday Resort Jobs in our programs so there’s something for everybody. Feel good knowing that your job placement is guaranteed – or your money back! Complete the free sign up form today and a member of our team will be in contact with you shortly to discuss your opportunities!

Apply Now


Disclaimer: No Legal Advice Provided.

The material on our website and on this webpage is intended to provide only general information and comment to our clients and the public. Although we make our best efforts to ensure that the information found on our website is accurate and timely, do not, under any circumstances, rely on information found on our website as legal advice. Nor do we guarantee the accuracy of any information contained on websites to which our website provide links. For assistance with your specific enquiry or problem, please contact a lawyer or other licensed professional.

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