Vancouver posts Canada’s biggest increase in new condo prices as “investors jump into hot rental market”

Prices of new condominium apartments in Canada’s major urban centres are on the rise.

A report notes that prices increased by 1.8 percent in the first quarter of 2022 compared to the last quarter of 2021.

Out of the nine census metropolitan areas (CMAs) mentioned in a Statistics Canada report released Wednesday (May 4), prices rose in four, decreased in three, and were unchanged in two.

Guess which CMA posted the biggest quarterly increase?

It’s Vancouver and neighbouring cities.

“Prices for new condominium apartments increased the most in Vancouver (+4.2%) in the first quarter of 2022, pushed up by declining inventories and continued demand for this type of dwelling,” Statistics Canada stated.

“As opposed to single-family homes, condominium apartments remained a relatively affordable option for first-time home buyers, but also for investors wanting to jump into a hot rental market,” the report explained.

Citing Rentals.ca, Statistics Canada noted that Vancouver recorded its highest year-over-year average rent increase of 29.9 percent in March.

“Higher rents have been attracting investors in this city, reducing the supply of available units and in turn contributing to the upward price pressures for these new condominium apartments,” the agency stated.

New condominium apartment prices also increased in Toronto and Victoria CMAs by 1.4 percent and 1.3 percent, respectively.

Prices were flat in Montreal and Calgary.

Meanwhile, Halifax, Ottawa, and Edmonton witnessed declines.

Quebec joined Vancouver, Toronto, and Victoria in the list of metropolitan centres that saw price increases in the first quarter of 2022 compared to the fourth quarter of 2021.

Statistics Canada prepared a graph of the quarterly price variations of new condominium apartments for the nine CMAs:

In its report, the federal agency also stated that prices of new condo apartments on a national level rose 7.3 percent year-over-year in the first quarter of 2022.

The increase was “mostly driven by price accelerations in Toronto (+8.9%) and in Vancouver (+8.3%)”.

Citing the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, the Statistics Canada report noted that the inventory of under-construction condominium apartments in the Vancouver CMA decreased by 4.7 percent in the first quarter of 2022 compared with the fourth quarter of 2021.

“This was the third consecutive quarter of declining inventories,” the report noted.

“While supply remained low, demand for housing continued to increase, which was influenced by a high number of in-migrants moving into British Columbia over the past year,” it continued.

Moreover, “Interprovincial net migration reached levels not seen since 1994 in the first and second quarters of 2021.”

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