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Bartering Rent Price


Hi everyone 😊 Today I will teach you how I bartered my rent price down. While living in New Zealand, I found that it was very common to haggle on rent price. I thought – why not try this in Canada? You guessed it! It works. Not only does this work for private housing rentals, this works for professional listings for apartments, townhouses, etc as well.


In my opinion, there are a few crucial factors when attempting to barter.

1. How desperate are you?

2. How desperate are they?

3. What is your highest that you can afford?

4. Know what you are looking for.

5. What do you bring to the table?

6. Understand the worth of the property and choose accordingly for price drops.


1. How desperate are you?

a. If you have a place to live currently, and are not in a hurry to move, this puts you in the most advantageous position.

b. If you are in a rush to move, you will have to adjust your price point accordingly.


2. How desperate are they?

a. If the listing looks like they are in need of a new tenant immediately– this will make the barter easier on you.

b. If the listing shows that they are waiting for the ‘right tenant’ – this is also a good sign. They may be willing reduce the price for the ‘right person’, and not necessarily focus on cost.

c. If the listing is looking for a ‘housemate’, and not rental of the whole place, there is a good chance that they are looking for someone to help pay rent, not make a profit, so you will likely not be able to barter this down.


3. What is the highest you can afford?

a. You will need to look into your finances and determine what is the HIGHEST possible amount you could afford without stressing about money.

b. Once the highest is determined, we can start adjusting your offer price

i. **will circle back to this near the end**


4. Know what you are looking for.

a. Do you want a studio, 2 bed – 1 bath, whole house, townhouse, etc?

b. Determine your ideal, what you would settle for, and what is a no-go.

c. You will also need to determine if you are willing to live with someone, or prefer to live alone.


5. What do you bring to the table?

a. This is where you need to be honest but creative.

b. You need to show how you will be a most ideal tenant – and if you have extra skills that could be helpful to your landlord. (ie, could help with repairs, painting, etc).

c. If they have pin-points in their add, make sure to answer those within your pitch.

i. Ie – quiet, non-smoking, small pets negotiable. – make sure to include answers to

these points to make you stand out.


6. Understand the worth of the property and choose accordingly for price drops.

a. Many properties are listed WAY higher than what they’re worth (love the housing market..)

b. Choose a property that is within $500 of your highest affordability, and their current listing price. Ie- you can afford $1000/month – don’t message too many properties listed above $1500 as they’ll be more likely to say no.


I will use my example to help show these steps in action!


1. I was not desperate. I was living at home with my parents, so I could take the time I wanted to find the perfect place!


2. Since I was not desperate, I did not have to take this step into as much of a consideration. This is a heavier step to focus on when you are in a rush to move.


3. After doing my finances, I determined the highest I could afford without feeling too stressed would be $950/month after expenses. So due to the fact I was not desperate, I offered $850/month.

a. While living in New Zealand, I also became accustomed to weekly/bi-weekly rent. I asked my landlord if I could pay on the 15th and 30th of each month for $425. This helps with budgeting.


4. I knew I did not want a studio suite, or a whole house. I wanted 1-3 bedrooms. I also did not want to rent with someone else. I much prefer living alone.


5. Please see below for this. Below is the EXACT thing that I sent to each property I was interested in. I actually had many people respond quite positively.


6. The place I’m currently living was listed for $1150 plus some utilities. I haggled this down to the $850 including utilities I pay now.

a. I did apply to places that were up to $1350/month incl. utilities though! I did actually have 3 properties that said they would keep me in mind if they couldn’t find a suitable tenant for the current asking price. I had one even reach out after I had moved into my current place (but I liked it here too much to leave).


Good evening, I’m quite interested in your rental property! I’m a young working professional. Currently working as an administrative assistant, but I'm also a part time interior design student.


Due to these factors I cannot afford the listed price, but know that I would be an excellent tenant. I have stellar personal, professional, and previous rental references. I spent a year living in New Zealand so my rental references would only be accessible via email, but the others are by email or phone (your preference).


I have outgrown the desire to party, so there would be zero concern on that front. My job is 8am-4:30pm, so there would be no noise disturbances either. Cleanliness and hygiene are very important to me. I was the head tenant at one of the properties I lived at in NZ, and the property owner said that I kept it cleaner than when she lived there. I do not own pets, and have no desire to get one any time soon either.


I wouldn't want you feeling as if you're missing out in this either though. Due to my interest in design, I would love to offer free advice, and help refurbish old furniture for you as well. I have also learned to do a touch of sewing, and have made pillows in the past. I could create some fun items or help upgrade the designs for your other rentals (if you have some), or for you personally.


I totally understand if you would prefer to wait and find a tenant that could meet your price requirements, but if you are willing to give me a shot, I would love to do an interview with you, and take a peek at the property. I can afford up to $850/ month including utility cost. Thank you for taking the time to read this, and please contact if you have any questions or concerns.


Kind regards,

Ashley MacLachlan


I hope some of these tips can help you get a better deal on your next place 😊

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