University students still hunting for Calgary rentals

Hundreds of students are moving into on-campus housing at the University of Calgary this long weekend, while some students living off campus are still struggling to find a place to live.

June flooding hurt an already tight rental market

The University of Calgary welcomes new students amid provincial budget cuts. 1:49

Hundreds of students are moving into housing on the University of Calgary campus this long weekend, while some students living off campus are still struggling to find a place to live.

U of C residence spokesman Randy Maus said more than 1,600 students are expected to move to the campus.

"What's had the biggest impact I think on us right now I think is vacancy rate. The vacancy rate is very low so our residences are very full," he said.

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Before the June flooding damaged thousands of homes, Calgary already had one of the lowest rental apartment vacancy rates in the country at 1.2 per cent.

Grad student Genevieve Laurent says was desperate to find an affordable place to live off campus.

"Some of them were quite un-liveable. There was one place that just didn't have windows, no closets. You're not looking for much, but you are looking for minimum accommodations."

Laurent ended up finding a room to rent for a few months, but a dozen of her friends are still searching.

Mount Royal University still has some spots available in its residence for students attending that institution.

Students worried about funding cuts

Despite nearly $150 million in provincial post-secondary budget cuts, the University of Calgary managed to stay in the black this year without major program slashes or faculty layoffs. But some students just starting their education are worried about the future.

"Some of the changes we as students don't notice right away, but they add up over time and then you start wondering where some things are going only to find out it’s because of the budget cuts," said student Syed Ahmad.