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What are the top factors to keep in mind when searching for a place to live in your city?

When searching for a place to live, some important factors to consider are safety, location preference and individual needs. Depending on your preferences, you may want to find a place close to work, school, shops, medical facilities and most importantly an area that is secure and safe. Although Calgary is a very safe city to live in, choosing the right place to live is essential to having a pleasant stay.

Below are some helpful factors to keep in mind when looking for a place to live:

  • Price; Calgary's numerous neighborhoods offer a wide variety of price ranges

  • Neighborhood; some expatriates may prefer a country setting, whereas others may prefer to be in the city center

  • Housing type; house, townhouse, condominium, apartment, duplex or multiplex

  • Housing condition; older dwellings look more historic, but often require more renovations than newer dwellings

  • Size of family; this may affect housing type and location

  • Distance to work; will you drive, walk or use public transportation to get to work?

  • Distance to schools; if applicable, will the children walk to school or is transportation provided?

  • Proximity of services; public transportation, fitness centers, shopping centers, etc.

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What are the most popular neighborhoods in your city for expats?

Communities / Apartment Communities

Distance from Downtown (km) and approx drive time (during peak commute time)

Brief Description of Area


25 km; 35-40 minutes

Single family homes, townhouses and condominiums; upscale, executive, non-gated

Coventry Hills Harvest Hills (NW)

25 km; 35-40 minutes

Single family homes, townhouses and condominiums; mid-range, non-gated

Downtown (SW)


Rental apartments, apartments, townhouses and condominiums; varying from basic to deluxe, non-gated

Dalhousie Varsity Scenic Acres (NW)

16 km; 20-25 minutes

Single family homes, townhouses, condominiums and limited selection of apartments; basic to executive, non-gated

Mount Royal Elbow Park Bel Aire (SW)

3-6 km; 5-10 minutes

Single family homes and limited townhouses, apartments, condominiums (except for Lower Mount Royal); mostly character or upscale updated, executive to deluxe, non-gated

Bonavista Bonaventure Willow Park (SW)

18 km; 20-30 minutes

Single family homes, limited townhouses and condominiums; basic to executive, non-gated

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Do expats tend to buy or rent their homes?

Typically expatriates opt to rent their homes if their stay is short. However, those with longer assignments may decide to buy a home. Some companies prefer that a transferee rent rather than buy, if only for the first year, to ensure the family feels comfortable in the selected area.
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Typically, will I be required to pay additional money up front (such as a deposit) before moving into leased housing? If so, how much is common?

In most cases you can expect to pay the first and last month's rent prior to moving in. Beyond that, your lease will clearly state the cost of rent per month, and whether utility bills are included. The lease also states a minimum length of occupancy in the property (generally one year), how payment is to be made each month, which appliances are included (if any) and (if applicable) whether or not parking is included.
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Are utilities generally included in the price of rent, or are they extra?

When renting a home, utilities are not typically included in your tenancy contract. However, in condominiums and apartments, some utilities are included in your leasing contract.
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Are there special security concerns I should be aware of in regards to my home or choice of neighborhood?

Calgary is a very safe city and the crime rate is low. However, it is recommended that you check out local police reports before deciding on an area to live. These reports provide factual information on types of crimes and how often they occur. This will most likely be a determining factor on whether you choose to live in a certain neighborhood or not. Please see the Useful Links below for more information, or contact Crown Calgary.
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I’m not sure if I should bring my appliances. What is the electric current, Hz and plug shape in your city?

The electric current in Canada is 120/240 volts. The electrical Hertz (Hz) is 60. Below are examples of the types of plugs that are used in Canada:

Type A - Flat blade attachment plug

Note: In the US and Canada, two-blade plugs are often polarized, with one blade larger than the other. Most outlets are designed to handle these. The larger blade is the neutral side of the current. This is a safety feature intended so the plug can only be inserted one way to reduce the risk of accidental shock. If you try to plug a modern plug into an old-style receptacle for equal size blades, it won't go in unless you file down the larger blade to the older plug size.

Outside the US, many countries with Type A use the old style plug, and a newer US plug with unequal pins might pose a problem. This can be bypassed using an adaptor (found in many travel kits) which converts the newer Type A plug to the older model with equal-sized blades. Be aware, though, that you might also be bypassing the protection that polarization provides.
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Do you have any other accommodation information that might help me?

If you are interested in a particular property, you will be required to complete a preliminary application. At that time, you may be asked to include a letter from your current place of employment on company letterhead. This should indicate your salary, job status and length of employment. Additionally, you may also be required to provide a letter of reference from a former landlord stating something to the effect that you paid your rent on time and were a good tenant. You may also be required to provide your Social Insurance Number for credit reference, along with personal reference numbers.
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Crown Relocations has made every effort to present accurate information. However, regulations, rates and other variables are subject to change and Crown Relocations cannot accept responsibility for the errors that might result. Should you have any questions or need additional information, please contact your local Crown representative.


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