Temporary residence in Kitchener/Waterloo Ontario?
March 15, 2009 8:36 AM   Subscribe

Need to find affordable temporary residence (about 8 months or so) in the Kitchener/Waterloo area. Any ideas?

My wife and I live downtown Toronto. She has just been offered a position in the Waterloo area that is too good to pass up. We own a home right now, and do not want to sell right away, as we want to see how the job goes, as well as see how the housing market fairs. Can anyone suggest where we can find affordable accommodations, in a good area? Bonus for places that are furnished and do not require a lease (we will be staying there Mon-friday and coming home for the weekend). Also, any tips on how to handle relocation would help!
posted by anonymous to Work & Money (5 answers total)
Finding temporary housing in the KW area is not a problem, as it's a two university area that has lots of rentals and sublets. Finding it in a "good area", might be a little more trying. Most of the rentals will be in and around the university area (basically south-ish Waterloo, from the Kitchener/Waterloo boundary and up), and you'd likely look at it as a student ghetto. A lot of places will look for you to sign a 1 year lease, but you should be able to find 8 month sublets when you look for them.

A good place to start are the University of Waterloo and Wilfrid Laurier University off-campus housing sites. Here's UW's Database for the KW region, the links on the left can get you to different regions (Cambridge?) and search in different ways. Here's WLU's (quite a bit nicer) site. Both have rentals and sublets listed I think, though for your purposes I'd probably look for rentals, as subletting from students often equals living with other students. Probably not something your wife and you would not enjoy.

Other links: Craigslist sublets board and the rental section for YourClassifieds.ca.

Finally, I can't find anything on the site, but the local paper is The Kitchener Record, it might be worth getting your hands on the physical paper, since it'll probably aim for non-student renters in other parts of the town.
posted by dnesan at 9:12 AM on March 15, 2009

In particular, I might look at UW and WLU's listings that are aimed more at their teaching staff, rather than at the ones more aimed at students, if you can find them.
posted by jacquilynne at 9:48 AM on March 15, 2009

For 8 month terms, you're dealig with (primarily) a student rental market so check the places that let you post for free. The above suggestions are good.

Check facebook, kijiji and craigslist classifieds. Many UW students have 12 month leases and need 4 or 8 month sublets depending on their co-op work (corporate internship) situations. I've had friends look for 8 month sublets when they went on 8 month work terms.

It might be tougher to find furnished digs but KW has a huge student population so you should be able to find something relatively easily. I was a landlord in Waterloo until I graduated and I advertised using facebook, Kijiji and craigslist.
posted by KevCed at 10:29 AM on March 15, 2009

If the position is at one of the large tech companies in the area (say, one that manufactures handheld email devices?), there is likely an internal Classifieds board that you could take advantage of. Reach out to your wife's future boss and see if they can post a "Wanted" ad on the company's Classified pages.

In general, non-student accommodations should be easier to find than a few years ago, as many of the student ghetto houses are being knocked down by the blockfull and replaced with midsize apartment buildings.
posted by Gortuk at 10:40 AM on March 15, 2009 [1 favorite]

The links dnesan listed above are your best bet here. If by 'in a good area' you mean 'not a student ghetto', then look for locations that are not within 2 km or so of the universities. Even the student boards have some nice houses, they just tend to be further away from the schools.

Really though the student areas aren't that bad. Many of the tech companies in the area are within a 5 minute walk of the campuses, which is right in the heart of student housing. If you just want to avoid seedy areas, steer clear of downtown Kitchener as it seems to have a bit of a reputation that way. The KW area is quite nice though. It's hard to go horribly wrong.
posted by sah at 1:13 PM on March 15, 2009

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