Rental Vacancy Rate Decreases in Canada

July 31, 2012:

According to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation’s (CMHC) spring Rental Market Survey, the average rental vacancy rate in Canada’s 35 major centres decreased from 2.5% in April 2011 to 2.3% in April 2012. In the survey, several observations were made. These included:

  • The major centres with the lowest vacancy rates were Regina (0.6%), Quebec and Saguenay (0.7%) and Guelph (1.0%).
  • The Canadian average for two bedroom rent (incl. new and existing structures) was $887 in April 2012.
  • The centres with the highest average monthly rent were Vancouver ($1,210), Toronto ($1,164), Ottawa Gatineau ($1,104), Victoria ($1,046) and Edmonton ($1,036) these were the only centres with average monthly rents above $1,000.

Year-over-year comparisons of average rent, however, were misleading due to higher rents in newly constructed structures. Excluding newstructures that did not exist in 2011, the average rent increased by 2.2% from April 2011 to April 2012 the same level observed between April2010 and April 2011.

The drop in vacancy rates make it more difficult for individuals relocating permanently and those on temporary assignments to find immediate rental housing. The increase in averagemonthly rent may require companies to increase housing budgets for their temporary assignees. These two factors should be taken into consideration when relocating employees into these locations.

Source: Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

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