Northern city claims 'highest rents'

That’s led Iqaluit, the capital of Nunavut, to record the highest average two-bedroom rent in Canada -- $2,265, according to the latest figures from the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC). The national average was $835.


No other city seems to come close in terms of average rent, according to the CMHC’s Housing Observer report. The next highest was Yellowknife at $1,486 per month and then Toronto, at $1,123. In Nunavut with a population of 7,250, there’s a short supply and unusually strong demand, with 22% home ownership compared to 68% nationally.

But it is also so cold that trees cannot grow in the area, and only three snowless months per year. Iqaluit officially became a city in 2001.

A city guide produced by Iqaluit officials notes a negative vacancy rate for all types of rental accommodation, and “job offers tend to come with the proviso of ‘housing not included.’”

A major property management company in the city has a waiting list of more than 50 tenants.

Nunavut should continue to see strong demand continue in coming years, with the CMHC projecting the number of households growing from 7,855 in 2006 to 10,000 by 2016 and 13,000 by 2036.

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