Canadian Cities Report Lower Apartment Vacancy Rates
CMHC (Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation) said that the
improving economy has pushed up the demand for housing rentals. According to a report,
it has become quite difficult to find apartments for rent in most cities in Canada.
Compared with 2.8% in October last year, the rental
availability this October fell to 2.6% in most major Canadian cities. On an
average, rental costs for a 2-bedroom apartment saw an increase to $860 from
$836 recorded one year prior.
Chief Economist of CMHC Bob Dugan pointed out that the
recovering economy was a major contributor to the boost in demand for ownership
as well as rental housing. In fact, the optimistic fiscal and economic outlook has
spelt good news for the real estate sector in general, encouraging mortgage lenders
and home buyers alike. He added that lower vacancy rates and higher rental prices
are also the result of higher immigration levels.
The one exception to this trend was Windsor, Ontario, where
one out of every ten rental apartments lay empty. The city where it was hardest
to find a rental apartment was Winnipeg,
where less that one in every hundred apartments was available.
The highest vacancy rates in a province were observed in
Alberta, with a rate of 4.6%. Alberta was one of the provinces which was hit
very badly by the recession. However, these high rates have not had an impact
on rental costs in Alberta’s largest city, Calgary. With an average
rental cost of $1,069, it is third on the list of most expensive cities for
renters, the most expensive being Vancouver,
with a $1,195 rental cost per month. Trois-Rivières,
Quebec is the cheapest city for
renters, with rental rates of $533 per month for a 2-bedroom apartment.