Falling Vacancy Rates Bump Up Rents in Edmonton

According to the results of Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation’s April 2012 Rental Market Survey, the apartment vacancy rate in Edmonton dropped to 2.7% - the lowest level since the spring in 2007 - down from 4.7% last year. The decrease in vacancies came as a result of rising migration into the province and robust job growth. 

Lower vacancy rates usually lead to higher rents and this year was no exception; rents for 2 bedrooms units were up 2.2% over last year in Edmonton when comparing the same structures. However, rates were relatively unchanged overall averaging $1036/month for a 2-bedroom unit when they included new structures into the calculation (structures that were not part of the survey in the previous year). I would imagine the new "Mayfair Village" affordable rental building downtown was part of the reason for the discrepancy between existing and new rental rates.


Sara MacLennan is the Director of Marketing at Liv Real Estate and a licensed Real Estate Associate. The bulk of Sara’s experience and wealth of expertise lies in on-line technology and marketing both for agents and consumers. Sara is the former National Director for Interactive Marketing for Coldwell Banker Canada where she was responsible for an extensive training program traveling to offices across the country training agents and brokers on marketing and technology. Find Sara on Twitter @edmontonblogger.

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11 Responses to “Falling Vacancy Rates Bump Up Rents in Edmonton”

  1. A commong guyNo Gravatar 18. Jun, 2012 at 9:55 pm #

    hmmmm… time to bump up our rates then :-)

  2. Inspector GadgetNo Gravatar 19. Jun, 2012 at 8:56 am #

    Keep in mind this statistic does not include any private rentals. This is only actual apartments.
    Look on Kijiji to get a sense of the other inventory…..it is quite large.
    I would tell you to pound sand if you tried to raise my rent Common Guy. Privates are a dime a dozen.
    I charge very fair rent for the rental I own in order to keep outstanding tenants.

    • A commong guyNo Gravatar 19. Jun, 2012 at 9:44 am #

      Really? I just did increase rate on two of my properties this past month. So don’t worry.
      Of course I know the market pretty well and I have never had any of my units vacant for any period of time (each has been rented within a week or two with multiple people interested).

      It amazes me how people who are renters think the landlords are some stupid desperate suckers that don’t know what to do with their properties.

      • stevenNo Gravatar 19. Jun, 2012 at 10:17 am #

        Well don’t be too amazed because Inspector Gadget is actually a landlord of course you’d actually have to read his post to know that.

    • wsnNo Gravatar 19. Jun, 2012 at 9:53 am #

      The state of these actual apartments would reflect the state of private rentals as well, since they are in the same free competitive market.

    • DaBullNo Gravatar 19. Jun, 2012 at 10:26 am #

      On Kijiji there is a lot of multiple posts for the same ad as well as apartment/rental management companies ads that are put there just in case a vacancy comes up during the month. You can’t judge the rental market from looking at Kijiji anymore, it’s being used by everyone in the business as an advertising tool these days. Kijiji is turning into what Autotrader.ca has become. If you haven’t noticed almost all ad’s on Autotrader.ca are from car dealers. Not many private ads, but even some of the ones that say they’re private, aren’t, there from a dealer. If you don’t believe this, get on the phone and check it out.

  3. Inspector GadgetNo Gravatar 19. Jun, 2012 at 12:41 pm #

    Hey Common,

    If you had an outstanding Tennant….you know, clean, quiet, on time with rent and treated your property well that would move if you raised the rent what would you do?

    • A commong guyNo Gravatar 19. Jun, 2012 at 1:00 pm #

      I usually set my prices a bit below the market value in order to have a larger selection of people to choose from. $50 less per month is a lot better than a tenant that wrecks the house. However, you still need to raise your prices accordingly and if you were below market value you are still attractive.

      • JohnNo Gravatar 19. Jun, 2012 at 1:07 pm #

        Agreed. You should always price accordingly with the market. It’s a business after all. Now with that said though, having a good tenant should also be factored into the cost of this business because in the end they will save you money by taking good care of your property.

  4. rnsNo Gravatar 19. Jun, 2012 at 2:23 pm #

    There are lot of private rental availability in Calgary. It’s not easy to rent a unit if asking more than market rent. But there are many units who have disconnect with rent/own ratio.
    Why are condo owners discounting renters and paying some $ from their pocket every month?

    • wsnNo Gravatar 19. Jun, 2012 at 10:26 pm #

      Landlords discount renters when there is a strong expectation that the price will go up.

      As seen in some more speculative BRIC countries. The price/monthly rent ratio has been very high, and stayed that way for the past 10 years. That ratio could be 500, which seems to benefit renters. But no, over the years, as the price went up 10x, the rent also went up 10x, while keeping the ratio unchanged.

      Whether Alberta will follow the same path is another story. I am not concluding either way.