• housing

    i don’t know a (harring)ton

    any knowledge on Harrington housing? Do a lot of UofT students stay there? How does it compare to other off campus student residences?



    hey there,

    maybe my head’s been in the sand or something, but this is the first i’ve ever heard of harrington housing. if it’s not on-campus, chestnut, or campus one, aka if it’s not directly affiliated with the uni, i don’t really know anything and dunno if i’m supposed to be advising on it. plus, if i haven’t ever heard of it, chances are it isn’t a huge hotspot for u of t kiddos. from what i can find, if you’re living there, you’re likely to be mixed in with students from other schools, like ryerson.

    i did check out the website– not sure if you’ve watched their testimonials yet, but maybe those can give you an idea of what things are like?

    either way, it’s hard for me to say, having not really dabbled in off-campus student housing myself. i will say harrington’s location (sherbourne and bloor) is good, but it could be better. while no frills, mcdonald’s, rexall, and timmy’s are super nearby, you’re looking at a 30 minute walk to u of t. i guess it’s aight if you buy a monthly pass and subway 10 minutes instead. but it’s no campus one.

    it does seem like having a kitchen as opposed to to a meal plan will help save you money, and i’ve seen some stuff mentioning programming for the students living at harrington. that’s gotta be good, right?

    wish i could be more helpful. but best of luck!

    be Boundless,


  • housing,  no one asked


    ah, the struggle. so you’ve either decided you don’t want to live in res, commute 4 hours from home, etc etc. well, welcome to the godforsaken housing market that is toronto.

    it’s bad, but it’s not as bad as narcity and blogto will make you think. apparently it’s true that rent is higher here than anywhere else in canada, and from what i’ve heard and experienced, the competition to get a place is intense. but (i’m told, to my great dismay) i don’t exist to scare you. in all seriousness, though, a lot of the trouble i had finding a place stemmed from the fact that i was pretty clueless. this isn’t the most organized post, but it will run you through everything i picked up that i wish i had known before.

    u of t will plug the toronto off-campus housing website, especially if you go to those off-campus housing seminars. it’s a good option, but it’s far from the only one out there and you’ll want to cover your bases. so here’s a rundown of options the housing seminars don’t cover:

    • the good ol’ craigslist, kijiji… anywhere else you’d go on the internet to buy used stuff

    the main thing i’d say for these options is be wary of scammers. if something seems too good to be true, it’s probably a trap. sift through the ads and use your senses. you can find gems on here if you’re meticulous, and if you get lucky. it’s not a terrible idea to give a try.

    what i really like about padmapper is its… map. which should seem intuitive, as the site literally has the word ‘map’ in its name, but its map really is superior to every other site i’ve been on. if location is super important to you, this is the site you want to use to find your place. there are also really nicely designed price filters. big fan of those.

    two downsides: padmapper lists full apartments only– you won’t find “room for rent” stuff going on here. so unless you’re looking for your own place or have already decided on roommates, it won’t be that great an option for you. also, it seems like the places advertised on here have rent higher than what you can find on facebook.

    kay, so it’s not as beautiful as padmapper, but we’re not web elitists here we JUST WANT A PLACE TO LIVE goddammit. viewit lets you pick a district– if you want to be in the st. george area, you’re gonna want T5. you can also choose between furnished and unfurnished apartments, general price ranges, and see placements on a map. i found listings here did tend to be a lil cheaper than on padmapper, but not by much. viewit also seems to be better for long-term rentals, whereas padmapper does list a lot of short-term stuff you can filter off if you’re not into that.

    if you’re looking for something low-rent, like a room in a shared house, this is not the housing site for you– it generally seems to advertise whole apartments.

    i, like, couldn’t figure out how to work this? but i figured i’d include it because you might have more luck with it than i did.

    also one i didn’t use, but you can check it out if you’d like. there are housing listings for all 3 u of t campuses provided!

    • reddit

    okay, yeah, i was pretty skeptical about this one too. i have a friend that managed to get a really great place last-minute off of reddit, though. i don’t know too much about the world of reddit (uncultured lol) but hey, if you’re confident navigating it, r/TorontoRenting might give you some leads.

    • facebook groups

    plug plug plug, because this is where it’s at, people. as far as i’m aware, your best bet lies with bunz home zone, which has over 100k members and is super active. the nice thing about bunz is that posts are pretty thorough and standardized, so you have a lot of information about a place before you actually reach out and say you’re interested.

    you can also search for roommates through bunz should you wish, although i’d really recommend the u of t off campus housing roommate portal if you want to live with a fellow student.

    on top of this, there are student-specific facebook housing groups you can check out:

    Student housing Toronto – UofT – Ryerson – OCAD,

    University of Toronto (U of T) – Off campus housing St. George,

    University of Toronto – Off-Campus Housing (St. George)

    University of Toronto (UTM) – Off-Campus Housing (Mississauga) 

    University of Toronto (UTSC) – Off-Campus Housing (Scarborough)

    • word of mouth

    this is also an option i really stand behind. a lot of people i know found their current apartments because they knew people who were moving out, or had others ask around for them. the perk of this, too, is if you have some sort of personal connection to the current tenants, you won’t have to contend as much with the dog-eat-dog world of competition.

    on roommates

    it can be a bad idea to live with friends. it can also be a bad idea to live with total strangers. the jury’s out on this one. just try to meet the people you’ll be living with first, and make sure your habits are compatible. also make sure you’re both willing to talk things through with each other should issues arise, as there’s nothing worse than the passive-aggressive sticky-note roommate.

    on timing 

    some people look for apartments waaaay before apartments become available at all. i definitely did this. there are probably better ways to use your time than browsing in december for nonexistent may move-in listings. i learned that things usually go up about 4-8 weeks out, especially on facebook.

    if you look too early, you might end up signing for a place too early, which will mean you pay rent you don’t need to be paying. would not recommend. save the money for burrito bowls or somethin that brings you joy, you feel?


    i’ve frequently been told you can’t find cheap rent near campus, and to look further if you want to save money. to a certain extent, that is true. but people make it sound like it’s impossible to get a room for under 1000 within walking distance, when i know people on beverley and in kensington paying 500-800. it is doable, if you know the right people or get lucky– just know that chances are you’d be living in a shared residential house, probably a pretty old one.

    on going home for the summer

    if you’re heading home for four months but want a place for the next year, you have three options. you can either:

    1. wait until you come back to find a september lease (a lil stressy)
    2. search for a place remotely, which i also wouldn’t recommend. you should always try to view a place in-person before you sign.
    3. find a lease that begins in may, and search for a subletter for the months you’re away. subletters basically live in your place while you’re not there, and pay their rent to you so you can pay the landlord at no extra cost to yourself. if that makes sense.i mean, subletting is its own ordeal and you always run the risk that you won’t find someone. then you’ll be responsible for your summer rent. many condos also have rules against subletting, the details of which can vary– if you lease a condo, make sure you know what those rules are. weigh your options and decide accordingly, friend.

    on furniture and furnishings

    perks of getting an unfurnished apartment: you have agency! your space will look the way you want it to. craigslist and carousell are your friend. ikea is also your friend.

    downsides of the unfurnished life: searching for furnishings, and transporting them to your place. assembling ikea furniture– i swear i can follow almost any other instructions, but ikea ones

    perks of a furnished apartment: no blood, sweat, & tears just to have a bed to sleep in

    why i didn’t want a furnished apartment: sometimes you get stuck with whack furniture. my friends have this huge, strangely orange armchair that they can’t fit through their door. it clashes with everything else they own. what to do, what to do?


    what the heck is hydro? GEEZ. i wondered about this for weeks and weeks before i finally found out it basically means your electricity bill in canadian. a lot of places i’ve seen will include all utilities except hydro and internet, so if you’re paying bills it’s useful to know what it is you’re paying for! if you can, try to get all your utilities included, though.

    if you’re staying in the summer, find out if your place has good ventilation and/or AC. if not, you can always look into getting a portable AC unit, i guess.

    know your rights! 

    this tenant survival guide is long, but it’ll run you through a crap ton of useful legal things. give it a glance, or refer to it if you get in trouble.


    this inspection checklist can be useful! some of the questions feel a lil stupid but it can help to give it a look over before you go to a viewing. it’ll give you a better idea of what to look out for, and remind you of lil things you might otherwise miss. like outlets. outlets are hella important.


    this is just the information i’ve gathered through personal experience navigating the system. i realize that it’s mostly geared towards UTSG, just because that’s… the area i know about? i mean, the sites should still work for scarborough and ‘sauga, but i don’t know the nuances of those markets. if anyone comments with tips for utsc and utm, i’ll add them on.

    proud of ya if you made it to the end of this post. here’s to having a place to live!

    over n out,


  • first year,  housing,  one programs

    on roomates and ones

    Hello! I was just wondering if there were any websites or groups in place that newly admitted students can meet each other? I noticed the Facebook page really wasn’t filled with students posting about themselves, I am trying to find a roommate! Also, what is your opinion on the ones programs offered to first years? Thanks!



    i also just went through facebook and wasn’t able to find any class of 2022 facebook groups. usually, these pages pop up over the summer after everyone has accepted their offers of admission. keep an eye out!

    as for finding a roommate, you can check out u of t’s off-campus housing portal. they have a specific area for roommates that is only open to students. you do need to log in with your UTORid in order to access the portal, so if you haven’t set that up yet, you can do so here.

    stephen king smiling GIF

    as for the ones programs, it really depends on what kind of student you are. on the one hand, they’re a really good chance to go super in depth on one specific subject in a small class environment, something that you usually don’t get to do until higher level seminar courses. on the other hand, they can be very time consuming and the co-curricular activities (such as guest lecturers or field trips) could be seen as something that bites into precious homework time.

    from a more personal standpoint (i did a ones program in my first year!), i enjoyed the classes and made really meaningful connections with the profs and other classmates. however, i did find that the courses didn’t count towards my eventual majors/ minors took up a lot of time (and valuable credits) that could’ve counted towards that. ultimately, it’s up to you. there are pros and cons and you just need to decide for yourself if the pros outweigh the cons.

    i hope this helps. get out there and learn!

     baby book story reading GIF



  • economics,  housing,  sociology,  switching

    options, stacks on stacks of options

    Hey aska!
    I’m doing a sociology specialist at the moment and entering my third year,
    but I want to look out for other majors. I’m kind of interested in economics
    at the moment, and want to take the two full year courses for the major
    prerequisites. However, I don’t know how smart that is (taking 2 full year
    courses just for the sliver of the chance of getting in) considering I’m
    not very good at math or time organization – I had to climb up from a 0.8
    GPA in first year because of a rough transition, and now my GPA and mental
    health are more secure I want to try branching out. I also want to ask if
    me being in third year affects my chances of applying to the program, since
    so many incoming first years have probably gotten a head start.Thanks for
    your reply:0



    being in third year does not affect your chances of getting into the program at all, you can apply for a subject POSt up until you want to graduate.

    as for whether or not it’s “smart” to take 2 full year courses in order to get into the major, i would definitely suggest at least trying. according to the department of economics’ website, you need both an ECO and MAT requirement and certain marks achieved in those courses. if you’re worried that it’s not “smart” because you’re bad at math and time management (which is extremely relatable to me), you could at least try enrolling in those courses, see how you do, and then drop before the deadline (this year, it’s november 6th for F courses and february 20th for Y courses). no harm, no foul.

     twin peaks okay smiling thumbs up dale cooper GIF

    if you’re really serious about enrolling in the econ major, you could also try taking just one of the courses this year or starting with both and dropping one if you need to. then, you could take them as summer courses later on or the year after. the only issue with that option is that it might further extend the time spent on your undergrad degree, but if that isn’t a big deal for you, then this is a good option in my (non-professional) opinion.

    i really believe that you can achieve whatever you put your mind to, but also know that there are other options that you can explore if the initial plan doesn’t work out. i would also suggest making an academic advising session with your college registrar’s office. i’m sure they’d be able to help!

    i hope this helps! good luck!



  • housing,  residence,  university-college


    Note from aska: *WARNING* if you aren’t caught up to game of thrones, you might not want to read this because it contains spoilers as well as several, and i mean several references to the show

    Hi, so I missed the deadline and thus now I don’t have a residence guarantee ( university college ).  I’m on the wait list. I wanted to ask what are the chances of me now getting a residence ? High or low ? Because I’m an international student so its really important for me to stay on campus. The residence people said they start sending out offers of residence to people on the waitlist by late June or early July. So should I start looking for off campus residences ? Or there are chances of me getting a residence ??!

    My situation right now is literally like HODOR holding the door while the white walkers tried attacking him. I’m freaking out. I didn’t know about the deadline. I thought June 1st was the deadline to submit the application.

    Looking forward to a prompt response

    Thank youuu


    i really wanted to answer this question with: hodor.

    but it makes me want to cry and being employed is great.

    once you miss out on that sweet sweet first year residence guarantee it’s kind of hard to say whether or not you’ll have a place to live. i wish i was jojen reed so i could have a vision and tell you “yes, you will get into res”,


    (btw if you haven’t seen this video, you should)

    but alas, like our lord commander jon snow himself, we know nothing.


    waitlists are super fickle and tricky to predict. if you’re on the waitlist, UC residence services might try to set you up with an alternative option or redirect you to the appropriate resources. give them a call, they might be able to give you more info about your situation!

    i would recommend you look through some other housing resources just to be safe. https://offcampushousing.utoronto.ca/ is great for housing for students. you can make your search very specific.

    these two websites are also popular when looking for apartments in toronto:



    for future reference: make sure to always always always always write all deadlines on your calendar and read everything very carefully. the university isn’t exactly lenient on missed deadlines for most things.

    i’m sorry you’re in this situation and i wish i could do more than entertain you with GoT references but i really hope everything works out!

    also, i love that subtle “looking forward to a prompt response”… ya well if by prompt response you meant several days, don’t worry, i got you

    (we’ve been going through some changes here at aska, bear with us, we’re trying our best here)

    the lannisters send their regards, (last one, i swear)


  • housing

    don’t do that pls

    I was wondering if I could get away with staying in my dorm after my final exam? I know that U of T has this policy where you MUST evacuate your dorm room after your last final exam, even if the exam period isn’t over yet.?(So if the residence closure date is Dec. 20 and my last exam is Dec. 13, I still have to leave right away so they can accommodate people for the?winter break). Can I get away with staying in residence until they
    officially close? Do you know any body who has done this?


    lol don’t do that.

    if you have a don, they are responsible for kicking you out. if you don’t have a don, it’ll be the responsibility of some stranger who works for uoft. either way, you don’t wanna deal with that, man, trust.

    if there’s an issue where you have no accommodation for over the break, you may want to look into this or contact housing services.


    P.S. i realize i answered this question too late but i hope it will be valuable for future kids who might be considering DUPING THE SYSTEM.

  • first year,  hard,  housing

    breaking bad first years

    Hi, I’m going to? U of T in the coming fall and I am having some difficulties during course selection.

    I’m considering enrolling in either a Chemistry specialist program or Financial Economics specialist program in the future. Therefore, I am intending to choose CHY151Y1(Y), MAT135H1(F), MAT136H1(S), PHY131H1(F), PHY132H1(S), ECO100Y1(Y). However, when I emailed my College Registrar’s Office about it, she said it would be ‘an extremely heavy course load’ for me. Do you think it is too heavy as well? Do normal people only do the prerequisites for one program only?

    I also wonder if it is possible to do the Physics courses in the 2nd year instead of the 1st year, but still have the prerequisites for a Chemistry program.

    Besides, I’m on the wait list for the residence. Is it likely for me to get a residence offer? If not, where do you recommend me to live in while I’m at U Of T?

    Sometimes I might worry too much but I do worry about the job opportunities of a Chemistry graduate!



    Hey hey

    Honestly, I do think that’s a rather heavy course load.

    If there’s anything there that you don’t actually need to take… just don’t take it. Spare yourself the trauma and stress. Normally, people take the fer sure prereqs for their would be programs, and maybe an elective here and there. And since I’m getting the vibe that you’re more into chem than eco, maybe don’t take eco? I’ve heard it’s a bit of a monster.

    But yes, you can just save the physics courses for second year if you don’t need them immediately.

    To get into chem, you only need CHM138H/139H. HOWEVER, note that if you go through with the specialist (as opposed to the major), you will eventually need physics down the line.

    As for residence…. er well it depends on the res and where you are on the waitlist. To be completely, honest, I have no idea if you’ll get in, but my gut is leaning towards a you shall not enter.

    Do you ABSOLUTELY need to live on campus?

    If you do, the university offers a roommate finder/house finder search function thingie. It may be a bit limited, but that’s something. Past that, there’s sifting through the usual sketchiness that is Craigslist, viewit.ca, and just… you know, Google.

    But if you can commute, do that.

    And job opportunities for a chemistry graduate?

    Well, you can always pull a Walter White… 😉



  • housing,  residence,  UTM

    she doesn’t even go here


    I was just wondering if you can still live on residence even if you are suspended for a year? Because I keep getting emails saying my housing application is incomplete and to complete it by a certain date etc. So now I am thinking of living on residence (If i am allowed to) and working for a year, since I can’t seem to find a place to live in the area for the September year…please help! (I am from UTM)

    Thank you!


    Hey hey

    Uhhhhhhhhh I want to give you one big fat firm no but I’ve come to realize nothing at this bloody university is ever black or white. Instead, I’m going to give a 99.9% sure no.

    Or well. Just no. Yeah. No. No residence for you.

    The goddess of logic tells me since dorms are student residences and you are not technically a student, then nay, you’re just getting emails but they’re not relevant to you.

    And if you can’t find a place right now, give the housing search (no longer available) a try! Or Craigslist. Or random google searches.



  • housing

    help me i’m pooooor

    Hi there, I am from out of town and wanted to know if renting a room off campus is more affordable than living on campus from your experience?? Also is it true that tuition is a flat fee rather than per course?? So someone taking 4 classes will pay as much as someone taking 5 classes.


    Hey there!

    Ummm well to be honest I’m a commuter… 🙁

    I never got the perk of living in res/near campus, but I can tell you from the many, many time I looked at listings on the Housing website and on Craigslist, and from the experiences of others that living off-campus is definitely going to be the option that’s kinder to your wallet.

    You can find housing in downtown Toronto for as little as $650 if you’re not super picky. And I actually had a friend who managed $350 a month by sharing a two bedroom apartment with three other people.

    So yes: more affordable housing = not U of T’s.

    As for tuition, if you’re a full-time student, then yes, you’ll be dealing with flat fees. As in yes, as you yourself say, someone in four classes pays as much as someone in five. But you can also maximize your flat fee and take six, although that probably isn’t the best idea unless you’re sure you can handle it.


  • housing,  international students,  partying

    where the party people at?

    I’m an international student possibly studying in Toronto. Where do you think I should live… on campus or find a house to rent a room in? My criteria are:- people who know how party…- but also aren’t completely out of it 100% of the time and work too


    Hey hey!

    Since you’re an international student, I’m going to recommend taking advantage of UofT’s guarantee for housing for first-year students just to be safe. Considering you’re not from here, you won’t really know what neighborhoods would be best and/or affordable for you. Furthermore, if you’re living on res, you’re most likely going to be with a bunch of people with a similar mindset of Party! Party! Party! and who will want to join you in that endeavor so there you go.



  • housing,  Toronto

    housing. need it. where?

    Hi there,

    Moving to Toronto soon. Kindly suggest housing search engines. Also, please inform me of any neighbourhoods that I should avoid or consider. Money is an issue, so affordability trumps trendiness.




    Hey hey,

    I have half a mind to respond in irritatingly short and curt sentences, buuuuuut I don?t quite like those so I?ll refrain from being sassy.

    For someone attending U of T, one of the best neighbourhoods would be Kensington Market. A girl I know shared a five-bedroom ‘apartment’ and paid $650 a month, utilities included. Aside from that, you?re in the middle of a lovely area with great food and great places to check out. Another one close to the university is the Annex, which is a little bit north of Kensington. Basically the same in terms of rent and places to go, but my favourite selling factor would be the nearness to BMV and Labyrinth. Living in an apartment either alone or with a roommate will probably cost around $800 or more regardless of the area you choose, so I maintain that Kensington and the Annex are great picks since with all the houses around there, getting a room would be more economical.

    And as for search engines, U of T has its own on the Housing website. But if you?re capable of sifting through sketchy ads, give Craigslist a try too.



  • housing

    match maker, match maker, make me a roommate

    Dear Asksa,
    I will be attending U of T St George in September as a first year student in social sciences and am facing a little bit of a problem..
    I got accepted into New College for residence and thought thats were I will be living until my dad said that he was actually thinking of making an investment by buying an apartment near the campus, so $12,000 for residence would be useless as I would have to move out second year regardless. I agreed, who wouldn’t be ecstatic to get there own place first year! Well at first I was on cloud nine but now…not so much. My dad told me that in order to get my place I need to find a roommate to pay rent, helping out with the financial situation….Still nothing seemed wrong until now that I have come to realize that I have NO IDEA how to find a roommate!? Im a first year student, who knows absolutely no-one and the few that I do now are all going to residence or staying at home like most first year students do! The deposit for residence was due a little while ago, so there goes that option. I don’t know what to do anymore :s Is there a website, a group, anything, where I can find people interested in living close to campus but not in residence?! Im really starting to stress out and would appreciate your help.
    Thanks so much!



    Have I got a solution for you!

    U of T Housing has a ‘Roomate Finder’ database! You post the information about the place, yourself and what you are looking for in a roommate and others searching for a place will email. It’s like Craigslist or Kijiji but specifically for U of T students.

    I personally have tried to rent a room through this resource and just got an overwhelming about of applications.

    Here you go! Look to the bottom right for the link, register and away you go!!

    May the crazies not apply.

    forever the cupid of future roommates,

  • CR/NCR,  housing,  money,  scholarships/bursaries

    Damn Government.

    I want to live either on residence or find an apartment downtown for the next school year but my estimated OSAP funding isn’t enough for living expenses in Toronto. Is there anywhere else I could turn to? Grants, scholarships etc. I really don’t want to commute again this year since it takes about 1.5 hours each way. Thanks.