So my wife and I have been very happy living in Leaside for the past many years, but we're now looking for a new place for us, our son, and my mother-in-law.
There is a big catch however. We ideally want to rent a house that has a bedroom on the first floor so that my mother-in-law won't have to climb the stairs.
This also means we need a full bathroom on the first floor so that my mother-in-law doesn't need to climb the stairs to reach the bathroom.
However finding a house that is for rent... In the area we are looking for... With a minimum of 3 bedrooms... With at least 1 bedroom + 1 full bathroom on the ground floor... With room for 2 cars in the driveway or garage...
Well, it is proving to be difficult.
Plus coupled with the fact that landlords are sometimes, unfortunately, racist. We have encountered this particular problem twice already where landlords are coming up with excuses not to rent to us. Not because of money reasons, my wife is a lawyer, I am gainfully employed as a personal trainer whenever COVID is not interfering with my work, and my mother-in-law is retired and has a hefty pension plan from the Hospitals of Ontario Pension Plan (HOOPP). So we definitely have the money, but landlords are a sketchy bunch when it comes to renting to African-Canadians.
As a Caucasian I admit this is my first time encountering this problem. I am admittedly used to just asking to rent a place and people just automatically saying "Yes, sure you can rent it!" Most of the places I have rented in the past didn't even ask for a credit check. (Yes, you read that correctly. White people are not used to having credit checks when we ask to rent an apartment or a house. People just usually take us on our word that we can afford the place. I fully recognize that I have been benefiting from white privilege for decades.)
There also seems to be a lack of availability in the East York region of Toronto that we are looking in, so we don't really have a lot of options.
- Look elsewhere. We might have more luck in a different neighbourhood.
- Wait and keep looking for new places to come on the market in the desired neighbourhood.
- Do both 1 and 2.
Really those are our only options right now.
I have to assume that somewhere out there is a landlord who isn't racist with a house that fits our needs.
The parking issue alone is annoying. Not every home even comes with a lane way or garage and some streets just use "on street parking", which unfortunately gets into legalities of where homeowners can actually park their cars without fear of being towed.
The other big issue happening right now is...
Which makes viewing homes a little bit trickier, but COVID has also thrown a wrench into the works with respect to house prices and also home rental prices.
What we have noticed is that the prices for renting a house keep coming down, which should really make landlords eager to find a renter - regardless of the colour of their skin! But apparently racist landlords would rather earn less money than rent to someone who is African-Canadian or to an interracial couple.