Average Rents in Canada Reach A Record High: Report

The average asking rent in Canada reached a new high of $2,078 in July, as reported by the latest National Rent Report from Rentals.ca and Urbanation.

This indicates an 8.9 per cent annual increase, marking the quickest rate of growth over the past three months. A 1.8 per cent rise in average asking rents compared to June represented the swiftest month-to-month increase in the last eight months.

In comparison to July 2021, average asking rents in Canada have gone up by 21 per cent, equivalent to an additional $354 per month on average. Various factors have contributed to this rise, including a surge in post-secondary students signing leases ahead of the fall term, an extraordinary level of population growth, and homebuyers being temporarily affected by the Bank of Canada’s latest interest rate increase to the highest level in 22 years.

“Canada’s rental market is currently facing a perfect storm of factors driving rents to new highs,” said Shaun Hildebrand, president of Urbanation. “These include the peak season for lease activity, an open border policy for new residents, quickly rising incomes, and the worst ever homeownership affordability conditions.”

For the very first time, the average asking rents for purpose-built condominiums and apartments surpassed $2,000 in July, reaching a total of $2,008. One-bedroom apartments led the way, showing a 13 per cent annual increase and a monthly uptick of 2.5 per cent. In terms of specific unit types, one-bedroom rents had an average of $1,850, followed by two-bedroom units at $2,191, and three-bedroom units at $2,413. Among the more budget-friendly choices, studios had an average rent of $1,445.

Calgary’s rental market maintained its reputation for having the quickest rent growth among Canada’s largest markets, as annual asking rents for purpose-built and condominium apartments went up by 16.1 per cent to $2,036, although this growth rate moderated from its 18.4 per cent pace in June.

Meanwhile, Montréal surged ahead with a notable acceleration from 11.2 per cent to 15.3 per cent in July, establishing an average asking rent of $1,987.

The rest of Canada’s largest markets experienced a slower pace of annual rent growth in July. Toronto saw an 11.5 per cent increase in average asking rents (compared to 15.7 per cent in June) to reach $2,849. Vancouver maintained its position with the highest average asking rent among the largest markets at $3,340, reflecting a 12.2 per cent annual increase and a 2.9 per cent monthly rise.

Greater Montréal emerged among the top five for fastest-rising rents in mid-sized markets. Laval experienced a significant 28.5 per cent annual growth, reaching $2,011, while Cote Saint-Luc saw a 23 per cent increase, reaching $2,306. In British Columbia, Richmond and New Westminster exhibited the swiftest annual growth rates, at 27 per cent and 20.7 per cent respectively.

Rent growth in Ontario was led by Brampton and Scarborough within the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), where average asking rents for purpose-built and condominium apartments saw increases of 18.6 per cent and 18.2 per cent respectively.

The report also highlighted an uptick in asking rents for roommate accommodations across various provinces. Over the past year, British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario, and Québec collectively experienced an average growth of 16.1 per cent, resulting in average roommate rents of $971. Québec boasted the fastest annual increase at 23.8 per cent, averaging $901, while British Columbia achieved a 20.4 per cent rise, with an average of $1,163. Alberta’s roommate rents increased by 14.4 per cent to $810, and Ontario saw a 7.1 per cent growth, reaching an average of $1,009.

Vancouver and Toronto secured the top positions in average asking rents for roommate rentals, with averages of $1,455 and $1,296 respectively.

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