Georgian College offers something new to tackle student housing crunch

This new program links students who need to place to live with older adults who are living at home

In a tight housing market where rents can be through the roof, Georgian College is offering another way for students to access housing.

The college says it is working with SpacesShared, a technology platform that “connects students who need a place to live with older adults living at home to create mutually beneficial sharing arrangements.”

The partnership allows older adults to safely offer a spare bedroom for extra income, to have a housemate and someone to help them with chores, and the college adds it gives students affordable housing options.

 “Older adults and students are two groups who have so much to offer one another, which is why we wanted to build a safe space for them to meet and match,” said Rylan Kinnon, Chief Executive Officer, SpacesShared in a media release on Wednesday. “We’ve made our platform really user-friendly — if you can use Facebook, you can use SpacesShared.”  

Phase one of the partnership will launch in the Barrie area.

“The focus will be on building a pool of older adults who wish to open their home to a student for a semester or school year,” the college said in the release. “In the second phase, students will be invited to create profiles on the platform and connect with compatible hosts recommended by the SpacesShared algorithm. The fully developed platform will allow verified users to match.”

Suzie Addison-Toor, Vice President, Student Success, says Georgian is committed to continuing to play a key role in driving the region’s economy by attracting and training its future workforce.

“We need safe and affordable housing for our students because if they don’t have access to that, it puts up huge barriers to being successful in academia, which puts up barriers to being successful in life. We also know this kind of program can also help with social isolation – both for students who may be far from home and for seniors in our community.” 

Georgian is the first postsecondary institution to launch on the SpacesShared platform and the company is providing a customized program for the college. Both partners are committed to adding the program to other Georgian campus locations in the future. 

If you or someone you know has a spare room and would benefit from a student’s help, company, or some extra income, sign up at  

Banner image – supplied by Georgian College – from left to right, Georgian College’s Sarah Stackhouse, Housing and Outreach Coordinator, and Suzie Addison-Toor, Vice President, Student Success, alongside Rylan Kinnon, Chief Executive Officer, SpacesShared.