Toronto rental market shows little growth over Q1

Investors in the residential market in the GTA need to be patient amidst a report from the Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB) that showed a slowing rental market.

The second quarter of 2014 showed less of the rampant growth that the first quarter report displayed, but the April-May-June period still reported some improvements, though that was likely bolstered by the number of investor-owned new builds coming to market.

“Condominium apartments rented out by investors represent an important component of the overall rental pool in the Greater Toronto Area,” TREB president Paul Etherington says. “These units account for the majority of newly completed apartments listed for rent in the marketplace today. Renters looking for apartments located in popular neighbourhoods with up-to-date designs and modern finishes are increasingly renting investor-owned units. This is why the number of rental transactions continued to increase last quarter.”

The number of units listed for rent increased to 12,510 in the second quarter, up 22.2 per cent from the year-ago period, and up 11.6 per cent from the first quarter. The number of leased units increased 25.7 per cent from the second quarter of 2013 to 7,342 units, a 45.9 per cent rise from the first quarter.

The number of one-bedroom apartments being rented rose 44.3 per cent from the previous quarter to 4,333, while the number of rented two-bedroom units rose 47.2 per cent to 2,660. Average rent for a one-bedroom apartment rose less than one per cent over the previous quarter to $1,583, while rent for two-bedroom apartments fell almost one per cent to $2,142.

“Last quarter we saw stronger growth in the number of units rented relative to the number of units listed,” said Jason Mercer, TREB’s senior manager of market analysis. “This suggests that competition between renters increased. If this trend continues, we will likely experience renewed growth in average rents in the second half of 2014.”

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