Some students say more housing information needed from the college

UBC, BCIT and KPU doing more say Langara students

Two women who study at Langara College look to find information on housing options.
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Reported by Palak Klaire 

With no campus housing nor college website to help find housing, many Langara students admit they are forking out more rent than they can afford or living far from campus.

While  BCIT and Kwantlen Polytechnic University offers off-campus housing communication platforms for student-to-student housing options, this same kind of information is unavailable on Langara’s website, frustrating many who come from abroad or outside the city.

“It’s really hard to find accommodation,” said Ekroop Kaur who studies web and mobile development at Langara. “Being a student you have to take care of many things; it should be in [your] budget.”

Is there enough demand?

Reba Noel, the manager of student engagement at Langara said the demand to provide this kind of information on the website is not high enough.

“Personally and professionally I would refer people to UBC’s site because that encompasses a close geographic area,” said Noel, adding that students must ensure online housing advertisements are reliable, and that safety and security of students must be a priority. 

Many Langara students look for accommodations on third-party websites. 

“There are some greats risks about that,” said Noel. “When you go about that kind of service you have to make sure there are mechanisms or practices in place where you can mitigate that risk.”

The risks

Using websites or social media to find rental accommodations is a great way to connect people, but they can also be a hotspot for fraud, according to the Langara Student Union Internal Vice President, Keshav Rai. 

“Sometimes finding a place to stay without knowing about it isn’t safe,” Rai said.

On the BCIT website a disclaimer says they do not “assume any responsibility for agreements made between the student and the landlord.” The site also states they do not “screen, inspect, warrant or approve,” any landlord student agreements or accommodations. 

There are other ways students can find a trustworthy place when it comes to shared and affordable accommodations, said Himanshu Gautam, a student-elected member of the Langara College Board of Governors.

“Some of my friends have pages on Instagram, where they provide information about jobs and accommodation,” Gautam said

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