is sooo dirty and old, I would rather live in a good basement.
The main difference is light, apartment is brighter than basement, and the feeling you live in. I used to live in a two-small window toronto downtown old basemnt for a whole year.As we are not used to it, at first , you will feel can't breathe freely and well, always dark, lack of nature light, eyeball sore.Of course after a month or so, you will get used to it.The other main difference is that basemnt is privately owned and managed. So if you lucky got a good landloard, they can help you a bit and treat you well. Otherwise...hard to say.
But apartment on the other hand is too much condition, not good for new immigrants at all. that's why most of us start with renting basement .
If you can get a above ground level basemnt , that's the best choice. But not too much of this kind . and it will be a little expensive.Good luck, friend and welcome to canada. Don't hate it when you come.
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