Rental vacancy up, but so is the rent

Calgary’s vacancy rate has jumped, but so too has rent.


Calgary’s vacancy rate has jumped, but so too has rent.


In April, the city’s apartment vacancy rate hit two per cent, up from half a per cent one year ago, and rent for a two bedroom apartment took top billing in the country at $1,096, $21 higher than Toronto, according to a Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation report released yesterday.


Calgary Apartment Association’s executive director Gerry Baxter said fewer people moving into the city combined with the recent completion of a number of condominium buildings have created a surplus of available rentals and the rent increases have “been modest,” — up just $7 since October.


He also thinks the CMHC numbers are fairly conservative as many within his association peg the real vacancy rate near four per cent.

George Williams, who just found a place to rent after an active three-week search, said he’s noticed the market open up drastically since the last time he moved.

“The first time, a couple years ago, I probably called 50 or 60 places and never got a call back, it was that bad,” said Williams, adding he hasn’t noticed a difference in rent. “This time around was totally different, it was essentially my pick, I looked at seven and had other calls from four places.”

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