November 2, 2015

Canada’s Purpose-Built Rental Vacancy Rate Increases

Canada’s 35 larger centres saw the average vacancy rate in privately initiated purpose-built rental apartments increase to 3.3 per cent in October 2015, from 2.8 per cent in October 2014, according to preliminary data from the fall Rental Market Survey released today by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC).

“The rise in the national vacancy rate was due to lower net migration in regions most affected by low oil prices as well as an increase in the supply of purpose-built rental apartment units,” said Bob Dugan, Chief Economist at CMHC’s Market Analysis Centre.

Overall, the average rent for two-bedroom apartments in existing structures increased 2.4 per cent between October 2014 and October 2015. In October 2015, the average rent for a two bedroom apartment in new and existing structures was $960.

The Rental Market Survey also covers condominium apartments offered for rent in 16 large urban centres, including Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal. In this particular segment of the secondary rental market, rental condominium vacancy rates ranged from a high of 5.3 per cent in Edmonton, to a low of 0.4 per cent in Hamilton. Average monthly rents for two-bedroom condominium apartments were highest in Toronto ($1,754) and lowest in Québec ($1,065).

October Vacancy Rate — Selected CMAs & Canada

Apartment Structures of Three or More Units, Privately Initiated

October Vacancy Rate — Selected CMAs Canada
Apartment Structures of Three or More Units, Privately Initiated
  2014 2015
Victoria 1.5 0.6
Vancouver 1.0 0.8
Edmonton 1.7 4.2
Calgary 1.4 5.3
Saskatoon 3.4 6.5
Regina 3.0 5.3
Toronto 1.6 1.6
Ottawa 2.6 2.6
Montréal 3.4 4.0
Québec 3.1 3.9
Halifax 3.8 3.5
CANADA 2.8 3.3

Source: CMHC, Rental Market Survey

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