Rent may be paid in several ways:

  • Cash, in which case it is imperative to obtain a receipt from the landlord
  • Monthly (post-dated) cheques payable on the date agreed
  • Certified cheques (guaranteed by the bank) that may be required for first and last month’s rent
  • Direct deposit prearranged with your bank
  • Online banking

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With a house rental, the tenant is usually responsible for utilities such as heat and electricity. The tenant makes arrangements to be billed directly by the utility company. It is advisable to check with utility providers well in advance of moving regarding payment options, installation dates, hook-up fees and security deposits.

Water: The city mails one utility bill that includes water billing and solid waste management fees. A tenant responsible for paying the water bill should send a copy of the final signed lease agreement to the utility company to ensure that the proper name is on the account. The owner, the landlord, typically pays for water usage.

Electricity: In Ottawa, electricity is provided by Hydro Ottawa (www.hydroottawa.com); in Montréal and Gatineau, by Hydro Québec (www.hydroquebec.com); in Toronto, by Toronto Hydro (www.torontohydro.com); in Calgary, by Enmax Calgary (www.enmax.com);in Edmonton byAltaGas (www.altagas.ca), Direct Energy (www.directenergy.com), Encor by EPCOR (www.epcor.com),Enmax Edmonton (www.enmax.com), or Just Energy (www.justenergy.com) and, in Vancouver, by BC Hydro (www.bchydro.com).

Gas: In Ontario, gas is provided by Enbridge Gas Distribution Inc. (www.enbridge.com); in Québec, by Gaz Metro (www.gazmetro.com); in Alberta, byAltaGas (www.altagas.ca), ATCO Gas (www.atcogas.com) or Enmax (www.enmax.com); and, in British Columbia, by Fortis BC (www.fortisbc.com).

Communications: Some of the largest providers of telecommunication services are Bell Canada (www.bell.ca), Videotron (www.videotron.com), Rogers (www.rogers.ca) and Telus (www.telus.com). These companies offer services, which may include internet, home and mobile telephones for national and international calls and cable TV. Please note that telecommunication industry rules have recently changed, and new telecommunication companies now provide competitive rates, including Koodo, Virgin, Wind and Fido. These companies will often offer reduced rates for individuals bringing their own phone into a new plan. Many of the newer companies, however, often have limited service outside of major Canadian cities.It is always best to consult with friends and colleagues about the various providers and compare packages and prices before signing a contract with a specific company. Some will negotiate. Please note that some providers charge installation or new customer fees.

Home insurance: One of the expenses that should be considered is the purchase of a home insurance plan. This may cover the following: losses that occur to one's home or its contents; loss of use (additional living expenses); loss of other personal possessions of the homeowner; and, liability insurance for accidents that may happen at the home or at the hands of the insurance policy holder within the policy territory.