Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

June 10, 2008 23:59 ET

Island's vacancy rate declines in the spring of 2009

CHARLOTTETOWN, June 10 - Results from Canada Mortgage and Housing
Corporation's 2009 Spring Rental Market Survey(1) released today, indicated
that the vacancy rate for urban centres in the province was 3.4 per cent, down
from 4.9 per cent during the same period last year.

"Sustained demand for rental units, combined with lower levels of rental
construction in both of the Island's urban centres over the past few years,
has resulted in fewer vacancies," said Jason Beaton, market analyst with CMHC
in Prince Edward Island. In April 2009, the vacancy rate in Charlottetown
fell to 3.5 per cent from 5.2 per cent a year ago. The vacancy rate in
Summerside also declined to 3.2 per cent from 3.6 per cent last April. "The
overall vacancy rate is expected to continue to decline as the supply of new
rental units is not expected to increase significantly in 2009," continued

Average two-bedroom rents in all Prince Edward Island's urban areas
recorded a 4.3 per cent increase in 2009, based on units common to both the
2008 and 2009 survey samples. In the Charlottetown area, the average
two-bedroom rent in new and existing structures was $695, compared to $665 for
the same period last year. The average two-bedroom rent in Summerside reached
$617 this year, compared to $598 in 2008.

The overall availability rate in Prince Edward Island's urban centres
declined to 5.6 per cent in 2009, compared to 6.5 per cent last year. The
availability rate declined in both of the province's urban centres. The
availability rate in Charlottetown declined to 6.1 per cent from 7.1 per cent,
while in Summerside the rate decreased to 3.2 per cent from 3.6 per cent.

As Canada's national housing agency, CMHC draws on over 60 years of
experience to help Canadians access a variety of quality, environmentally
sustainable, and affordable homes - homes that will continue to create vibrant
and healthy communities and cities across the country.

(1) CMHC's Rental Market Survey is now conducted twice a year in April
and October, to provide vacancy, availability and rent information on
privately initiated structures in all centres over 10,000 population
across Canada. Reports are released in June and December.

The spring survey covers apartment and row structures containing at least
three rental units, and unlike the fall survey does not report information on:

1. Smaller geographic zones within centres
2. Secondary rental market (rented condominium apartments, single
detached, semi-detached, duplexes or accessory apartments).

In our analysis, we have avoided making comparisons between the results of
the April 2009 rental market survey and the October 2008 survey. A key reason
for this is that changes in rents, vacancy rates, and availability rates
between the spring and the fall may not be solely attributable to changes in
rental market conditions; they could also reflect seasonal factors. For
example, if more people tend to move in the spring than in the fall, it could
have an impact on vacancy and availability rates as well as the level of
rents. Alternatively, in centres where there are a significant number of
university students, vacancy and availability rates could be higher in the
spring if students move home for the summer.

To the extent that these types of seasonal variations exist, comparing
results from the spring and fall Rental Market Surveys could lead to incorrect
conclusions about trends in rental market conditions.

For more information, visit or call 1-800-668-2642.

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NOTE : A table of vacancy rates, availability rates and rents is


Vacancy Rate Availablity Rate Average 2-Bedroom
Rent ($)
Total Total Total
Centre -------------------------------------------------------
Apr-08 Apr-09 Apr-08 Apr-09 Apr-08 Apr-09
Charlottetown CA 5.2 3.5 7.1 6.1 $665 $695
Summerside CA 3.6 3.2 3.6 3.2 $598 $617
Prince Edward
Island 10,000+ 4.9 3.4 6.5 5.6 $617 $643

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