Chilliwack average rents up, vacancy rate down

Local situation in the rental market mirrors the national picture according to CMHC

If it feels like the rental market in Chilliwack and elsewhere is getting tighter and more expensive, it is.

The average rent for all types of private apartments as of October 2019 was $949, according to the latest statistics from the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) Rental Market Survey.

That’s up from $898 in 2018, $820 in 2017 and $758 in 2016.

For the smallest types of apartments, bachelor suites, the average rate was $734 in October 2019, up from $716 in 2018, $580 in 2017, and $575 in 2016.

For units three bedrooms or larger, the latest average rate of $1,355 is up from $1,191 in 2018, $912 in 2017, and $867 in 2016.

• READ MORE: Chilliwack vacancy rate at 1.5 per cent

As for the vacancies, while the statistical variance is small, the rate of 1.3 per cent in Chilliwack in the latest numbers is down from 1.7 per cent a year prior.

Nationwide, CMHC reported the vacancy rate has declined for the third year in a row. At 2.2 per cent for all-bedroom types, the rate is at its lowest level since 2002.

“Low vacancy rates in major centres underscore the need for increased rental supply to ensure access to affordable housing,” CMHC’s chief economist Bob Dugan said in a press release.

CMHC conducts the rental market survey annually in October to gauge how economic, demographic and other factors impact Canada’s rental markets. The survey is based on purpose-built structures with three or more rental units in urban areas with populations of over 10,000.

Nationally, tighter rental markets were accompanied by strong rent growth, with average rents increasing by 3.9 per cent for a two-bedroom apartment between October 2018 and October 2019. This is the fastest pace of same-sample rent growth since October 2001.

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