Rental apartments at a premium in Calgary
Published Thursday, December 13, 2012 5:46PM MST
Last Updated Thursday, December 13, 2012 6:25PM MST
It's getting harder and harder to find a place to rent in Calgary. For those lucky enough to find an available apartment, the monthly cost may be difficult to afford.
New numbers show Calgary now has one of the lowest vacancy rates in the country.
A quickening economy, and a rising influx of people coming to Calgary, has dropped the city’s apartment vacancy rate to 1.3 per cent. The rate is the third lowest among all Canadian cities slightly behind those of Thunder Bay and Regina.
Alberta's average vacancy rate fell to 2 per cent from 3.4 per cent in 2011.
On average, a two-bedroom apartment in Calgary has a monthly rent of $1,150. In downtown Calgary, where vacancy is currently 0.5 per cent, the average rent is $1,240.
The vacancy rate is forcing renters with good salaries to make some tough decisions.
“You're almost having to decide basically what can i give up in order to accommodate,” says Angela Atkinson, a renter in Calgary. “You look at your finances and ask ‘How much breathing room do I have?’ That's what I had to do, 'What’s the highest point I can go without having to sacrifice going to a movie or doing things outside work?'”
Calgary’s rental costs are steep but the city is not the most expensive place to rent in Alberta.
Renting a two-bedroom apartment in Wood Buffalo will cost tenants an average of $2,000 a month.
Wood Buffalo’s average rental is nearly triple that of the province’s least expensive rates. In Medicine Hat, an average two bedroom apartment rents for $700.