Toronto’s condo completion rate not enough to stave off scarcity

by Ephraim Vecina30 Nov 2018

Only a total of 11,620 new units across 60 purpose-built rental buildings have been added to Toronto from 2005 to 2018, according to Altus Group Ltd.

Also, the rate at which new units are added to the market is hovering close to a 5-year low of around 10,000 units.

When taking into account that the city is predicted to attract 17,000 new renter households a year, these attempts to remedy Toronto’s condo scarcity remain insufficient. The city’s rental segment currently has a vacancy rate of around 0.5%.

“Homelessness is growing, couch-surfing is growing and this will have a lot of pressure on families and on the city itself,” ACORN (Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now Canada) Toronto member Alejandra Ruiz Vargas told Bloomberg.

Read more: Flip rates in Vancouver, Toronto are much less than one would expect

Data from Urbanation indicated that price points saw a commensurate increase. Average rental rates grew by 7.6% to reach $2,385 in Q3 2018, and by 17% for newly available purpose-built units.

“We’ve reached a point now where given the amount of people, industries we’re attracting, we are already becoming terribly unaffordable for everyone,” University of Toronto professor Richard Florida said. “We’re at a crisis and we don’t even realize it: Our transit, traffic problem and housing problem are urgent matters.”

“Everyone’s getting priced out,” he added. “My students at the Rotman School of Management in the University of Toronto, who are going to be some of the most successful students in Canadian business, are now saying it’s doubtful they could ever afford a single-family home.”


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