Canada rental vacancy rate rises
Canada’s rental vacancy rate edged up in 2016 as the supply of apartments increased, but rental housing was harder to find in Vancouver and Toronto, where a long housing boom has driven real estate investment and a condo building boom.
Canada’s vacancy rate increased to 3.4% in October from 3.3% a year earlier, as the number of new units hitting the market outpaced the rise in occupancy, the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp said.
The tight market drove rents higher as well, with the average cost of renting a two-bedroom apartment up 5.7 percent in Vancouver and 3.1 percent in Toronto from a year earlier, well above Canada’s 1.5 percent annual inflation rate.
Years of bidding wars and rising house prices in Vancouver and Toronto have sparked fears of a Canadian housing bubble and spurred foreign investment in condominiums, though the housing market in the rest of the country has largely cooled.