Donate Housing

A place to call home — at an affordable price

We all need a roof over our heads, and for many refugees that roof has been elusive. Even after arrival in Ottawa, finding affordable shelter is a challenge.

Ottawa has a severe shortage of housing that is affordable, leaving more people — including refugees — at risk of homelessness every passing month. Refugee 613 works with housing advocates, settlement agencies, private landlords, housing co-ops, the City of Ottawa and other partners on its Housing Task Force, to support refugees in finding and keeping a place to call home.

If you have a vacant apartment or house you would like to open to refugee tenants, please email info@refugee613.ca  and include the rental size and location. We will then connect you to our partners in the housing sector, who may be able to support you in finding a good match. Please remember that most refugees will only be able to afford rents at the low end of the market. Housing is the single greatest support you can offer a recent arrival, but do not upload your offer unless you are prepared to be flexible in the rent.

If you have other questions about housing for refugees, email info@refugee613.ca and our volunteers will connect you to the right experts.


Do refugees receive help to find housing?

Housing workers at settlement agencies help all refugees, including claimants, find places to rent. Private sponsors are obliged to have a home ready for the newcomers they are sponsoring. Some agencies also provide support to people at risk of homelessness, helping them to stay in their homes longer.

Is there enough affordable housing for everyone in Ottawa?

No. There is a serious shortage of housing that is affordable to anyone living in Ottawa on a low income, including Ontario Works or minimum-wage jobs.

Will refugees jump ahead of others in the wait for social housing?

No. Refugees are not allowed to apply for social housing until they have been in Canada for one year. After that, they will be eligible to apply to be placed on the waiting list, like anyone else. There are currently several thousand names on the waiting list for social housing in Ottawa.

As a landlord, I’m nervous about renting to refugees. What support is available?

Many government-assisted refugees and refugee claimants have the services of a housing worker who can provide support to both you and the newcomer, including access to interpreters and help to resolve any problems that might arise. Private sponsors can also help you to develop and maintain a good relationship with your new tenant.

Government-assisted refugees have the services of a housing officer at one of the settlement agencies, who can also provide support to both you and the newcomer, including access to interpreters to help clarify information and help resolve any problems that might arise.

Contact info@refugee613.ca if you have more questions about support for landlords renting to refugees.