Calgary has highest rent out of major Canadian cities, finds report

Calgary’s tight rental market is loosening up a little, according to a report released Tuesday.

Vacancy rate for Calgary apartments edges up to 1.4% but that doesn't mean a drop in prices, says CMHC

The Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation says Calgary has the most expensive average monthly rents for two-bedroom apartments in new and existing structures in large centres. (CMHC)

Calgary has taken top spot for the most expensive average monthly rents for two-bedroom apartments in new and existing structures in large centres, according to a report released Tuesday.

But the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation’s (CMHC) fall rental market survey also says the city's tight rental market is loosening up a little.

Average rents

The average two-bedroom rental unit in Alberta was $1,238 per month in October.

  • Calgary was $1,322.
  • Edmonton was $1,227.
  • Lowest average two-bedroom rent was in Medicine Hat at $795 per month.
  • The market with the highest average rent continued to be Wood Buffalo at $2,118 monthly

The rental apartment vacancy rate was 1.4 per cent in October compared with just one per cent a year previous. It means a few more apartments are available, but don't expect a drop in rents.

“Despite the increase from 2013, the vacancy rate remained low by historical standards, resulting in continued upward pressure on rents,”  Felicia Mutheardy, CMHC's senior market analyst for Calgary, said in a release.

The cost of renting an average two-bedroom apartment increased almost six per cent. Rent for a one-bedroom rose by more than seven per cent.

In Calgary, the average rent for a two-bedroom apartment was $1,322 per month in October.

The most expensive two-bedroom units are downtown at $1,459 per month and in the Beltline at $1,441.

Among urban centres in Alberta, vacancy rates ranged from zero per cent in Canmore and Lacombe to 11.8 per cent in Wood Buffalo.