If you’re looking for an affordable rental in Canada, Toronto should officially be at the bottom of your list. A new survey from PadMapper, a rental data website, found that in 2017, Toronto surpassed Vancouver as the most expensive city to rent in Canada.
The average price of a one-bedroom rental in Toronto jumped 15.4 per cent to $2,020 in 2017, beating out Vancouver’s already high average of $2,000 per month. The next priciest city to rent from is just outside Vancouver in Burnaby, B.C., where the average price of a one-bedroom rental sits at $1,430. Montreal, Barrie, Victoria and Kelowna follow, with Ottawa coming in at eighth place, costing $1,120 per month for a one-bedroom rental.
Crystal Chen, a spokesperson for PadMapper, says that the increase in average rent is due to an inconsistency in supply and demand. “The huge year over year rental growth is mostly due to the fact that the demand for rental units in (Toronto) is far outpacing the current supply,” she states. “Until there are new units built to meet this ever growing desire to live in Toronto, not much relief will come in the near future.”
So it doesn’t look like renting in Toronto will become more affordable anytime soon.
In November, the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) reported that large average rent increases were seen in British Columbia and Ontario, while rent decreased in Saskatchewan and Alberta. If you’re looking to find an inexpensive place to rent in Canada, some of the cheaper cities to live in are Windsor, Saguenay and Saskatoon, where one-bedroom rentals cost between $690 and $750 per month.
For those hoping that renting a condo may be more affordable than renting a house or traditional apartment, the numbers are just as grim. Condo rental prices increased nine per cent in the GTA at the end of 2017, while the number of available listings dropped 16 per cent.
Shaun Hildebrand, the senior vice president of Urbanation, explains that the increase in demand will lead to more construction in the future: “Persistently strong rent growth throughout 2017 was simply the result of demand fundamentals for renting far outweighing supply. This has raised the confidence of developers to add more units to the pipeline, a trend that will need to continue in order to meet future housing needs for the GTA.”
So, if you want to live in and around Toronto, get ready for more construction, higher rent and fewer options.