The national rental vacancy rate declined in October for the first time in two years, bringing the number down to its 10-year average, the CMHC said Tuesday.
The average vacancy rate for purpose-built rental apartment units across Canadian centres with a population of 10,000 or more decreased from 3.7% in October 2016 to 3% in October 2017, the CMHC said in its rental market survey.
The decline reflects a recovery in rental demand in Canada’s oil-producing provinces, it said.
Here are some of the report’s findings.
- The average monthly rent for a two-bedroom, purpose-built rental apartment across Canada’s centres is $989.
- The largest rent increases are in British Columbia and Ontario: Kelowna (8.6%), Victoria (8.1%), Vancouver (6.2%), Belleville (5.9%), Oshawa (5.2%), Hamilton (5.1%), Barrie (4.6%) and Toronto.
- Average monthly rents for two-bedroom apartments in new and existing buildings are highest in Vancouver ($1,552), Toronto ($1,404) and Calgary ($1,247).
- Rent decreases occurred in Saskatchewan and Alberta, including Saskatoon and Edmonton (both at -1.3%) and Calgary (-1.0%).
- Lowest rents are in Trois-Rivières ($594), Saguenay ($605) and Sherbrooke ($631).
- The average rental condominium vacancy rate declined from 1.9% in October 2016 to 1.6% in October 2017.
- Rental condominium vacancy rates ranged from a low of 0.2% in Victoria, to a high of 6.9% in Edmonton.
- The highest average two-bedroom rental condominium rent was in Toronto ($2,301), followed by Vancouver ($1,874) and Ottawa ($1,566). The lowest rents were recorded in London ($996), Québec ($1,052) and Gatineau ($1,061).
“Nationally, increased demand for purpose-built rental apartment units outpaced growth in supply, leading to a decline in the vacancy rate and a reversal of the trend we’ve seen over the last two years,” says Gustavo Durango, senior market analyst at CMHC. “Demand for purpose-built rental apartments can be attributed to historically high levels of positive net international migration, improving employment conditions for younger households and the on-going aging of the population.”