Rent in Ottawa

How to Find Rent in Ottawa with No Credit Check

Finding a rental property in Ottawa can be challenging, especially if you have no credit history or a low credit score. However, there are still ways to secure housing without undergoing a credit check. In this article, we’ll explore alternative options and strategies for finding rent in Ottawa, even if you don’t have a strong credit background.

Understanding the Rental Market in Ottawa

Before diving into the solutions, it’s essential to understand the rental market in Ottawa. The city has a diverse range of housing options, from apartments and condos to houses and townhomes. The demand for rental properties can be high, particularly in popular neighborhoods like Centretown, The Glebe, and Westboro.

Factors that Influence Rental Decisions

Landlords in Ottawa typically consider several factors when screening potential tenants, including:

– Credit score and history

– Employment status and income

– Rental history and references

– Background and criminal record checks


Strategies for Finding Rent with No Credit Check

Despite the challenges, there are several strategies you can employ to find rent in Ottawa without a credit check:

1. Look for Private Landlords

Private landlords, as opposed to property management companies, may be more willing to overlook credit history if you can demonstrate your ability to pay rent through other means. Search for rental listings on platforms like Kijiji, Facebook Marketplace, and Craigslist, and look for postings by individual landlords.

2. Offer a Higher Security Deposit

Some landlords may be open to waiving the credit check requirement if you offer a higher security deposit. This shows that you are financially responsible and committed to the rental agreement. Be prepared to offer an additional month’s rent or more as a security deposit.

3. Provide Alternative Proof of Financial Stability

If you don’t have a credit history, you can provide alternative proof of your financial stability. This may include:

– Bank statements showing consistent income and savings

– Pay stubs or an employment letter confirming your job and salary

– A letter of reference from a previous landlord or employer

4. Consider Subletting or Room Rentals

Subletting or renting a room within a shared house or apartment can be a good option if you’re having trouble finding a rental on your own. In these situations, the primary tenant or landlord may be more lenient with credit requirements.

5. Look for Rent-to-Own Opportunities

Some landlords offer rent-to-own programs, where a portion of your rent goes towards the eventual purchase of the property. These arrangements may be more flexible with credit checks since you’re working towards ownership.

6. Seek Assistance from Non-Profit Organizations

Non-profit organizations that focus on housing and tenant advocacy may be able to provide guidance or resources for finding rental housing without a credit check.

7. Find a Co-Signer or Guarantor

Another strategy to consider is finding a co-signer or guarantor for your rental agreement. A co-signer is someone who agrees to be legally responsible for the rent payment if you are unable to pay. This can provide landlords with added assurance and increase your chances of being approved without a credit check.

Potential co-signers could include:

  • Family members
  • Close friends
  • Employers (some companies offer rental guarantor programs for employees)

When asking someone to co-sign, it’s important to be upfront about the responsibilities involved. The co-signer’s credit will be checked, and they will be on the hook for any missed rental payments or damages. Make sure your co-signer fully understands the legal and financial obligations before agreeing.

Having a reliable co-signer or guarantor can help demonstrate your credibility as a tenant and offset any concerns the landlord may have about your lack of credit history. Just be sure to maintain open communication and make your rental payments on time to avoid putting your co-signer at risk.

By utilizing a co-signer strategy in conjunction with other methods like offering a larger deposit or providing proof of income, you can improve your chances of finding quality rental housing in Ottawa without a credit check.


Finding rent in Ottawa without a credit check can be challenging, but it’s not impossible. By exploring alternative options, being proactive, and demonstrating your financial responsibility, you can increase your chances of securing suitable housing. Remember to be transparent with potential landlords and highlight your strengths as a tenant.

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