Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

December 14, 2006 08:15 ET

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation: Apartment Vacancy Rate Remains Low in 2006

VICTORIA, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(CCNMatthews - Dec. 14, 2006) - CMHC's October 2006 rental market survey indicated apartment vacancy rates were unchanged from last year, at 0.5% in Metropolitan Victoria, as demand for rental housing continued strong. "Metro Victoria reported the lowest vacancy rate of all major Canadian centres for the third consecutive year. In 2006, Calgary and Vancouver were the only other centres with rates below 1%," said Market Analyst Peggy Prill, CMHC Victoria. "Low unemployment levels and strong job growth means more migration to Victoria, with robust demand for both ownership and rental housing. Average rents are on the rise, with an average of $731 reported in 2006 compared with $704 in 2005." The lowest average rent was in Esquimalt, at $682, while Oak Bay had the highest average rent, at $836. The average rent in Victoria City of $723 was close to the Metro Victoria average of $731.

Vacancy rates ranged from 0.0% in Sidney to 0.9% in the West Shore (Langford/View Royal/Sooke/Colwood). Victoria City (0.5%) and Saanich (0.4%) each saw rates edge up one-tenth of one percent, but most markets saw rates dip as renter demand strengthened in areas outside the urban core.

By excluding the impact of new structures built since the last survey and conversions from the calculation, we can get a better indication of the rent increase in existing structures. For the Victoria CMA, the average rent for a two-bedroom apartment in existing structures increased by 4.1 per cent in October 2006 compared to a year ago.

With the release of the 2006 Rental Market Survey results, CMHC advised its clients that starting in 2007, its Market Analysis Centre will be conducting a rental market survey in the spring, in addition to the one conducted in the fall. The results of the spring survey will be published in June and will provide centre-level information on key rental market indicators such as vacancy rates and average rents.

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) has been Canada's national housing agency for over 60 years. CMHC contributes to improving the living conditions and the well-being of Canadians through four areas of housing activities - housing finance, assisted housing, research and information transfer, and export promotion. CMHC is committed to helping Canadians access a wide choice of quality, affordable homes, and making vibrant and sustainable communities and cities a reality across the country. For more information, visit or call 1 800 668-2642.

Preliminary numbers are summarized on the attached tables.

(Ce document existe egalement en francais)

CMHC surveys rental markets across Canada every October. Local survey results are published in the British Columbia Rental Market Highlights report for B.C. markets including Victoria, Duncan- North Cowichan, Nanaimo, Port Alberni, Parksville-Qualicum, Courtenay-Comox, Campbell River, Powell River as well as a detailed report for Metro Victoria. Results are available at

To view the map and tables accompanying this press release please click on the following link:

Contact Information

  • Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation
    Peggy Prill
    Senior Market Analyst
    (250) 360-7322
    CMHC Victoria
    (250) 363-8040
    (250) 995-2640 (FAX)
    Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation
    Lee F. King
    B.C. Corporate Representative
    (250) 363-8050