Top 8 Rental Platforms in Vancouver for Students

Finding a place to call home in Vancouver is challenging, stressful, and costly. Especially when you are a student or a newcomer, you may need help with where to start and which apartment rental platform in Vancouver is more reliable.

We’re GEC Living, the largest off-campus student accommodation provider in Vancouver. We have thoroughly used all available rental platforms in Vancouver and gathered tons of feedback from our residents. Here is a list of top rental platforms that we suggest you use for finding your home in Vancouver as a student:

List of Suggested Rental Platforms for Students:

liv.rent

One of the best rental platforms in Vancouver - Liv.rent
liv.rent

liv.rent is a Vancouver-based all-in-one rental platform for rents, landlords and property managers. Why GEC list liv.rent first? The platform looks and feels modern and it makes your rental hunting more enjoyable. In addition, all the integrated features make renting smooth and secure; here are a few:

  • Possibly the Most Secured Rental Website – all listings have been verified by liv.rent. It minimizes the chances of you getting scammed and saves time filtering listings.
  • Rental Profile (Apply Directly Online) – your rental profile allows you to share it directly with your potential landlord for easy screening purposes and avoid a time-consuming communication process.
  • Digital Contracts (Sign Directly Online) – an industry-standard verified contract which allows you to review and sign right on the platform
  • Available Payment Solutions (Pay Directly Online) – you can use all types of credit or debit cards, as well as Bitcoin! 
  • Variety of filters – you can search by pet-friendly, furnished or unfurnished, room or apartment and more

Besides its awesome renting and leasing features, liv.rent also provides many insights about the current rental market and tips on renting in Vancouver. You can read their blog post if you want more information about living in Vancouver.

Places4students

One of the best rental platforms in Vancouver - Places4students
Place4students

Places4Students is one of the most highly suggested rental websites for students as it has partnered with over 190 campuses and schools across North America. The website enables students to search for off-campus housing accommodations safely and conveniently, while landlords must pay to advertise their listing on this platform. So, fraud or scam attempts are extremely rare.

Why Places4students is suitable for students:

  • Refer by College & University – as mentioned above, Places4students has a close relationship with different colleges and universities. You can click here to find all their partnered schools.
  • Rental Near Your School – search rental options by entering your school’s name. By narrowing down your searches, you could find off-campus housing just minutes away from your school.
  • Sublet & Roommate Available – since the rental platform is tailored to students; it also allows you to sublet or share the place with other students easily. 

If you would like to find a place that is near your campus with fewer scams or frauds, then Places4students is the right option for you!

Off-Campus Housing 101 (OCH101)

One of the best rental platforms in Vancouver -  OCH101
OCH101

OCH101 is an online rental platform helping colleges and universities to manage off-campus housing for their students. Local landlords are also welcome to list their properties on the website.

Key features that make OCH101 suitable for students:

  • More Filter Options – you can filter rental options. For example, disability, smoking, pets, and short-term stays, these filters can facilitate your searches to find the desired place to stay.
  • Rental Near Your School – you can search by your school’s name on their website, which will list every rental option near your campus.  

OCH101 has a larger variety of school listings than Places4students. Schools like Langara College and NYIT can not be found in Places4students while appearing on OCH101. This can be an alternative option for students who are looking for off-campus housing that is close to your school.

Craigslist

One of the best rental platforms in Vancouver - Craigslist

Craigslist is arguably the most well-known advertisement website that not only covers housing rentals but also advertises jobs, sales, and even discussion forums. As it is a popular website for housing with very few regulations, which also implies that you may encounter scams or frauds easily.

Why do students use Craigslist to search for rental

  • Most Thorough Housing Options – Craigslist provides students with the widest range of searches for rental options among all other rental platforms.
  • Thorough Filter Options – it provides all kinds of filters you could ask for, including; short-term, long-term, private or shared apartment, furnished and unfurnished or more.

The downside of renting on Craigslist as a student is that you’ll have to stand out among dozens of other applicants, and students are generally not favourable to landlords especially if you are looking for a private apartment rental.

Because of its popularity, scams and frauds also occur frequently on this website. To avoid it, here is an article published by Craigslist that tells you how to avoid scams on Craigslist (with examples of scams)

Kijiji 

One of the best rental platforms in Vancouver - Kijiji

Kijiji is an online advertising website that operates in many provinces across Canada. It is a platform for people to buy, sell or trade almost anything. Rental is also a big sector served by Kijiji. 

Why students should use Kijiji to search for rental

  • Roommate Option Available – it allows students to find someone to share a place with

The key downside of Kijiji is that it doesn’t have a map option for you to see different listings’ locations. You may need to google the address to see the exact locations, which can be quite annoying.

Unlike Craigslist, Kijiji has certain guidelines for buyers and sellers, which has a relatively low chance of getting scammed. However, students should always be alert and stay away from users that act suspiciously. 

Zumper

One of the best rental platforms in Vancouver  - Zumper
Zumper

Zumper is another online rental platform that Vancouver renters and landlords will likely encounter. It offers long-term, monthly, and vacation rentals, with different housing options for rent. 

Key features that make Zumper suitable for students

  • Easy to Use Interface – similar to liv.rent, it provides a seamless experience with browsing different options and leasing your desired place 
  • Amenities Filter – you can filter the amenities by your preferences, such as; air conditioning, parking, and a balcony. This filter option is handy, as not all apartments provide parking or air-conditioning (it is essential during summer!). So, you can choose a suitable place base on your preferences.

Zumper is one of the rental websites that commonly used in Vancouver to find housing. Make sure to give it a try as well.

Facebook Groups

One of the best rental platforms -Facebook group
Facebook Group

Facebook groups should not be unfamiliar to all of you. It is another popular buy/sell/rent online platform to hunt for cheap deals and is also well-known for people to rent apartments and houses in Canada. 

By joining Facebook groups, members can post rental listings or rental request to lease out or rent their places.

There are a variety of Facebook groups that are suitable for students searching for housing, you can simply request to join and become a member of the group to see different posts and listings in the group chat. Here are four Facebook groups that we recommend:

Vancouver Housing, Rooms, Apartments, Sublets

This group is intended to help students who are going to school in Vancouver and looking for a place to live, and it has 69.4k members. You can easily find students that are looking for a place or roommates to share a place with. Members of the group can also sublet their housing to others in this group. 

Vancouver – Rent apartments Houses Rooms

One of the most commonly used Facebook groups for Vancouver property rentals, it has over 67.5k members in this group. Landlords will post the housing pictures to the group chat will a brief description of that property, and you can write a post to request a housing unit that is based on your preferences as well!

Vancouver apartments/houses for rent/rentals/roommates/roomshare/liv.rent 

This group is managed by liv.rent, and it has 43.9k members. One of the features is that it has a four-verification process to help you avoid scams, and all landlords are verified by liv.rent. It might be the safest group to rent from compared to other rental groups on Facebook.

Housing and Sublets in Vancouver (rentals) 

This group chat is managed by Boom, a rental financial service provider and it has 22.4k members. Like other rental groups, Boom manages the group chat on daily basis, and their goal is to ease the whole process of apartment hunting, starting with connecting landlords with renters. 

Facebook rental groups is one of the easiest platforms for students to rent a place. As you can simply post a rental request after joining the group, and someone will reach out to you if they have any listings that match yours. However, there are not many filters for you to customize your options. You may need to scroll down to view all different types of housing and not all of them can suit your needs.

Nestpick

One of the best rental platforms in Vancouver - Nestpick
Nestpick

Nestpick is a global housing rental website that covers regions from Asia to Europe, and it mainly offers furnished apartment rentals. It is a good platform for students, as most of them have just arrived in Vancouver, and they may not want to purchase all the furniture or equipment for their places.

Why should students use Nestpick for rental hunting

  • Search by Move-in Date – students can pick your own desired move-in date and find the best matches on this platform.
  • Student Residence Options – you can find listings that are only for students. 
  • Neighbourhood Filters – from cafes, nightlife, and parks to grocery stores. You can filter it to meet all your needs.

Similar to other rental website, Nestpick acts as a mediator to connect different rental websites and renters together. The major downside is that Nestpick’s listings are synced from other rental websites, such as Roomster. This may expore you to potential scam listings.    

So what’s the best rental platform for students to find their home in Vancouver?

It really depends on each student’s situation:

If you haven’t landed in Vancouver and decided to rent a private apartment from oversea, we would strongly suggest liv.rent as it provides the most seamless rental process and all listings are verified. Available payment options also allow you to secure your place easily.

If you haven’t landed in Vancouver and decided to rent a shared apartment from oversea, we would suggest checking Facebook Marketplace as you can see people’s Facebook profiles and chat with them if it’s a good match for you to co-living with them in the future.

For those who are in Canada and decided to rent a shared or private apartment, we would suggest checking all platforms and narrowing down your preferred options. However, you should also be mindful and extremely careful about scammers out there.  

We have also published a blog of top tips of renting process in Vancouver for you. You should briefly read it through as it explains smart steps to consider before starting your rental hunting in Vancouver, and how to avoid scams.

Lastly, GEC should be your first consideration for student housing in Vancouver. GEC is the largest off-campus student housing in Vancouver and served over 10,000 students from 70+ countries over the last few years. Make sure to inquire availabilities and rates at GEC so that you can compare them with other listings you found on the above rental platforms!