As we all know, rental properties come in all different shapes and sizes. Generally speaking, there’s something out there for everyone. You can be as general or specific as you want with your housing needs. A particular neighbourhood. Pet-friendly. Special amenities. But one of the most important things renters have to decide is whether they want an apartment or house.

Some people might balk at that sentiment. They might think a house is out of their price range or an apartment is too small. This depends on your needs. Are you willing to sacrifice location for space? Do you need an ultra-modern place downtown and are happy to live in a tighter dwelling? To get the rental property you want, you have to understand what you need.

Of course, certain aspects of renting apartments or houses are universal. To make the best decision for yourself, you have to be honest. Is an apartment or house the best rental property option for you? 

That’s where we come in. We’ve compiled a list of three crucial questions you need to ask before looking at any rental properties.


What’s My Lifestyle?

Are you a city slicker or country-folk? Do you love the hustle and bustle or peace and quiet? Figuring out whether you should be pursuing apartments for rent or house for rent starts with questions like that. The kind of lifestyle you lead can often dictate what type of space you should rent.

Living in a downtown core is often associated with apartment living. While there might be houses available in a city centre, it’s generally less common. That’s because apartments are smaller, more compact, and there are a lot more of them available. Renting an entire house in a downtown core may be possible, but it’s generally a costly option.

People that need more distance from the city should consider a house in the suburbs or even the countryside. There’s usually a lot more bang for your buck associated with this option. You can often get a bigger home and more property. That said, if you work in the city, you may have to consider daily traffic as commute times may increase significantly.


Who Lives With Me?

Let’s be honest: cramming a family of four into a one-bedroom apartment can make life difficult. If you have a family, apartments might not be the best option. You’re always in tight quarters with your children, and they might not have the space to play or go outside. Even a two-bedroom option is a stretch as kids get older and need their own spaces.

If you’re a single person living on your own, you may not have an immediate need for lots of space. This can be the case even if you live with a partner. Renting out an apartment might be a stronger option in this scenario. You can more comfortably dictate which area you want to live in without restrictions. A pressing need for a larger space may mean only certain areas of your city are viable options.


What Can I Afford?

Common sense says an apartment is cheaper to rent than a house. That’s not always the case. If you compare a one-bedroom apartment in an expensive city to a four-bedroom home in a more rural area — the house might actually end up being cheaper. The key is to make sure you do your research and understand the price of housing in your market.

You also need to set a budget for yourself and map out your wants and needs accordingly. Blindly deciding that you want an apartment or house in a particular area will only cause more long-term headaches. If you’re looking for apartments or houses for rent, check out our residential listings page to find the best rental properties on Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands.