Vacancy rates drop to 0.8 per cent in Lower Mainland

Rents climb as demand for Metro Vancouver apartments outstrips supply

Rental vacancy rates have decreased to an average of 0.8 per cent across Metro Vancouver

Rental vacancy rates have decreased to an average of 0.8 per cent across Metro Vancouver

It’s become tougher to find an apartment if you’re a renter.

The apartment vacancy rate in Metro Vancouver dropped to 0.8 per cent in October, the lowest level since 2008, according to a new report from the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp.

That’s a slight decrease from 1.0 per cent a year earlier, and it’s been an even steeper drop from 3.1 to 0.8 per cent in the Abbotsford-Mission area.

Within Metro, vacancy rates were lower still in Vancouver – which had a rate of 0.6 per cent – as well as UBC, the North Shore and South Delta.

South of the Fraser, the vacancy rates were 1.9 per cent in Surrey and 1.5 per cent in Langley.

The rates decreased by at least one percentage point in Langley, Pitt Meadows/Maple Ridge and Delta.

The report cites population growth as a prime factor in the tightening rental market, as increased demand outpaces the construction of new units.

Rising home prices in many markets may have deterred or delayed the home buying plans of some renters, keeping downward pressure on rental vacancy rates.

“Continued price gains in the resale market have kept tenants in the rental market longer,” the report said.

The average two-bedroom apartment now rents for $1,368 in Metro Vancouver, up from $1,311 a year earlier. In the Abbotsford-Mission area, two-bedroom rents are up to $864 from $835 a year ago.

Landlords are charging higher rents when units turnover, CMHC said, and the strong demand may also be allowing them to impose the maximum allowed rent increases on existing tenants.

Rents vary widely across the region – the report notes average rents in Surrey are $359 lower than in the City of Vancouver.

“The Abbotsford area, like much of the suburban area of Vancouver, is also becoming more desirable for its lower housing costs and strategic location,” the CMHC report said.

“While most residents of Abbotsford City stay in the region to work, there are a number of commuting options, including the relatively new Port Mann Bridge, which helps to reduce commute time to the west side of the Lower Mainland.”

Just Posted

Councillor Doug Elford. (File photo: Amy Reid)
Elford to join Surrey Homelessness and Housing Society as a director

Fellow Safe Surrey Coalition Councillors Laurie Guerra, Mandeep Nagra and Allison Patton will be re-appointed to the board

A cyclist stops traffic to allow a gaggle of geese cross the road. (Tino Fluckiger photo)
White Rock man asks motorists to be mindful of wildlife after close call

Impatient motorists drives into oncoming traffic

Big Splash water park is located in Tsawwassen. (submitted photo)
Big Splash reopens Canada Day with changes to keep the water park ‘safe for everyone’

Executive Hotels & Resorts has owned and operated the attraction since 2017

Elgin Park Secondary students rally for climate change outside of their South Surrey in 2019. (Nick Greenizan photo)
City of Surrey set to host online climate-action panel

June 23 Zoom event to include speakers, question-and-answer period

(Photo: Tom Zytaruk)
Surrey council moves to reduce parking along rapid transit corridors

This also targets rental housing developments in Rapid Transit Areas

Maxwell Johnson is seen in Bella Bella, B.C., in an undated photo. The Indigenous man from British Columbia has filed complaints with the B.C. Human Rights Tribunal and the Canadian Human Rights Commission after he and his granddaughter were handcuffed when they tried to open a bank account. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Heiltsuk Nation, Damien Gillis, *MANDATORY CREDIT*
VIDEO: Chiefs join human rights case of Indigenous man handcuffed by police in B.C. bank

Maxwell Johnson said he wants change, not just words, from Vancouver police

Members of the Department of National Defence are on their way to North Vancouver after a local homeowner expressed his worry about a military artifact he recently purchased. (DNV Fire and Rescue)
Military called in to deal with antique ‘shell’ at North Vancouver home

‘The person somehow purchased a bombshell innocently believing it was an out-of-commission military artifact,’ said Sgt. Peter DeVries

Amy Kobelt and Tony Cruz have set their wedding date for February, hoping that more COVID-19 restrictions will have lifted. (The Macleans)
B.C. couples ‘gambling’ on whether COVID rules will let them dance at their wedding

Amy Kobelt and Tony Cruz pushed back their wedding in hopes of being able to celebrate it without the constraints of COVID-19

A plane is silhouetted as it takes off from Vancouver International Airport in Richmond, B.C., May 13, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Report calls for airlines to refund passengers for flights halted due to COVID-19

Conclusion: federal help should be on the condition airlines immediately refund Canadian travellers

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Green party Leader Annamie Paul speaks during a news conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, June 15, 2021. Paul has survived another day of party strife after a planned ouster shifted course, leaving her with a tenuous grip on power ahead of a likely federal election this year. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
Green Leader Annamie Paul blasts ‘racist,’ ‘sexist’ party execs who sought ouster

Fallout has continued, with two of the federal council’s members resigning

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry says re-opening B.C.’s border to the U.S. ‘is not in our best interest’ right now. (B.C. Government photo)
Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry (B.C. Government photo)
B.C. records 113 new COVID-19 cases Wednesday, four deaths

Vaccination of young people rising quickly, near 75 per cent

Russian President Vladimir Putin, left, and U.S President Joe Biden shake hands during their meeting at the ‘Villa la Grange’ in Geneva, Switzerland in Geneva, Switzerland, Wednesday, June 16, 2021. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko, Pool)
Biden says meeting with Putin not a ‘kumbaya moment’

But U.S. president asserted Russian leader is interested in improved relations, averting a Cold War

Vancouver Giants will return to the ice on Oct. 8, hosting the Prince George Cougars at Langley Events Centre. (Special to Langley Advance Times)
Vancouver Giants will renew division rivalry with Cougars when season resumes in October

First game on Langley Events Centre home ice since February of last year

Most Read