March 2020 Rent Report

The average rent for Canadian properties in February was $1,823 per month, a decrease of 3% from January, and a decrease of 3.4% annually, according to Rentals.ca listings data. The median rental rate was $1,725 per month in February, a decrease of 4.2% from both a month ago and a year earlier ($1,800).

It might be too early to attribute the February decline to COVID-19 worries, but after a strong spring and summer for rent growth in 2019, rates have trended downward nationally. This report will further dive into changes in rents by property type and location.

Provincial Rental Rates

On a provincial level, Ontario had the highest rental rates in February 2020, with landlords seeking $2,212 per month on average (all property types). British Columbia had the second highest rental rate at $1,885 per month, while Newfoundland and Labrador had the lowest at $927. With the exception of Quebec, all provinces experienced a month-over-month decline in average rents between January and February 2020.

Average Rent by Property Type and Bedroom Count

The chart below shows average rent levels in select provinces for apartments by tenure: condominium apartments and rental apartments. The data is further outlined by the number of bedrooms.

Condo apartments have higher average rents for each bedroom type and in each province in comparison to rental apartments. In Alberta, average rents were the lowest for each bedroom type for both condo and rental apartments, while the opposite was the case in Ontario. By comparison, rent for a one-bedroom condo apartment in Alberta was $1,396, while the same form of unit in Ontario rented for $2,264.

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