With the soaring real estate market prices, it should come to no surprise that we are experiencing low vacancy rates in the rental market which impacts the rental market rates. Shared living is an affordable alternative. Whether you are seeking for a roommate with HomeShare Alliance or searching elsewhere, we want to help you put your best foot forward towards finding a desirable place to call 'home'. The following are a few items that could help put you in the forefront:
With today's high real estate prices and living alone on a single income, homeownership may be unattainable given the current market.
After years of homeownership, many who are faced with divorce may find it difficult getting back onto the property ladder. HomeShare Alliance offers a highly affordable solution for accommodation for people who are waiting for the real estate market to cool off or drop down to more affordable prices. We also offer long-term stays if you decide that you prefer more freedom without the responsibilities tied to homeownership!
Checklist for Roommates:
Credit Score and Report - you can download your own report at Equifax.com (for a small fee) within a few minutes, or try CreditKarma.ca (it's free!). It's a good practice to obtain your report at least every 1-2 years so you are aware of where you stand with creditors. Your own inquiry will not have an impact on your score. Ensure that your credit score is at the very least in the 'Good' level range. Depending on the home share, some will only accept candidates having a 'Very Good' or 'Excellent' range. If your credit score is low, find out why and if there are any discrepancies in your credit report and how to correct them.
Income verification: Gather the last 3 pay stubs and/or a Letter of Employment (including company letterhead, income verification, your job position, and how long you have worked for the company). If you are self-employed or receive investment income, have your T4/T5 available and your Notice of Assessment for the past 2-3 years.
2-3 personal references - Have a list of personal references ready. It's also a good idea to let your references know that you are using their name.
Previous landlord reference - Notify a previous landlord that you are using them as a reference. If they manage a number of rental units, they would appreciate you refreshing their mind before someone calls upon them for a reference check. A letter of reference from a previous landlord is always good to have on hand, too.
Criminal Background Check - Many roommates are now asking for Criminal Background reports as part of their due diligence. It can take a few weeks to process, so it's a good idea to start a request right away.
By having the above items readily available during your search, not only will it help expedite the process, but it will also demonstrate your level of responsibility and awareness to potential roommates.