Vacancy rates in Prince Edward Island's capital city have doubled in the past two years, according to the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation. A report by the CMHC says the rate in Charlottetown is now hovering at five per cent.
"There should be an ample supply of apartments available at all rent ranges and all ages. We are seeing increased vacancies right across the board," said Jason Beaton of the CMHC.
The vacancies are – in part – due to new construction. The city has seen 1,000 new apartments built in the last four years.
Norray Properties has 30 buildings in the city with a total 320 units. Management tells CBC News about 10 per cent of their apartments are not rented.
Beaton said CHMC will release a new set of rental numbers in the coming weeks. He expects it will, once again, favour renters.
"We expect vacancy rates will rise from their current level," he said. "There's still several hundred apartments under construction."
Tenants making a move
For tenants, the over-supply is good news. Companies are offering deals such as free rent for the first month as a way to lure in new renters.
"We'll definitely make more of an effort to see what's available to me and see if I can't take advantage of what's out there," said Ruby Madigan.
She recently moved to the city from Colorado and hopes to move out of her current apartment soon. Madigan's neighbourhood is noisy because it's an area populated by students.