Rental Markets Post Mixed Results

    ST. JOHN'S, June 6 /CNW Telbec/ - The results of the April rental market
survey(1) released today by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC),
indicated that vacancy rates for private apartment structures containing three
or more units posted mixed results within surveyed centres throughout
Newfoundland and Labrador. There were approximately 235 vacancies for a
provincial vacancy rate of 4.2 per cent.
    Within the St. John's CMA, 179 units were vacant, with the vacancy rate
sitting at 4.6 per cent. "Without an accompanying improvement in future
employment conditions, out-migration could keep the vacancy rate from falling
in the region," said Chris Janes, Senior Market Analyst with CMHC in
Newfoundland and Labrador. "Interest rate hikes, escalating new home
construction costs and weaker income growth are slowing the demand for
homeownership. Accordingly, the movement of renter households into a
homeownership situation is also slowing," added Janes.
    The tightest rental market, Labrador CA, had no vacancies during the
April survey. Vacancy rates for other centres surveyed were, Gander CA:
4.6 per cent; Grand Falls-Windsor CA: 4.7 per cent; Bay Roberts CA:
12.5 per cent and Corner Brook CA: 2.4 per cent.

    Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) has been Canada's national
housing agency for more than 60 years. CMHC is committed to helping Canadians
access a wide choice of quality, affordable homes, while making vibrant,
healthy communities and cities a reality across the country.

    CMHC's Rental Market Survey is now conducted twice a year in April and
October, to provide vacancy, availability and rent information on privately
initiated structures in all centres over 10,000 population across Canada.
Reports are released in June and December.
    The spring survey covers apartment and row structures containing at least
three rental units, and unlike the fall survey does not report information on:

    1. Smaller geographic zones within centres
    2. Secondary rental market (rented condominium apartments, single
       detached, semi-detached, duplexes or accessory apartments).

    In our analysis, we have avoided making comparisons between the results of
the April 2007 rental market survey and the October 2006 survey. A key reason
for this is that changes in rents, vacancy rates, and availability rates
between the spring and the fall may not be solely attributable to changes in
rental market conditions; they could also reflect seasonal factors. For
example, if more people tend to move in the spring than in the fall, it could
have an impact on vacancy and availability rates as well as the level of
rents. Alternatively, in centres where there are a significant number of
university students, vacancy and availability rates could be higher in the
spring if students move home for the summer.
    To the extent that these types of seasonal variations exist, comparing
results from the spring and fall Rental Market Surveys could lead to incorrect
conclusions about trends in rental market conditions. To avoid this, we have
limited our analysis to the results of our spring 2007 Rental Market Survey
and comparing these results for different centres across Canada. In spring
2008, when we have results from our second spring Rental Market Survey, we
will be able to extend our analysis to make year over year comparisons.

    Note: A table of vacancy rates, availability rates and rents is attached.
    (Aussi disponible en français)

                                 Vacancy      Availability       Average Rent
                                Rate (%)          Rate (%)    Two-Bedroom ($)

                              April 2007        April 2007         April 2007
    Newfoundland & Labrador          4.2               4.8                560
    St. John's CMA                   4.6               5.3                602
    Bay Roberts CA                  12.5              12.5                422
    Corner Brook CA                  2.4               2.4                476
    Gander CA                        4.6               4.6                490
    Grand Falls-Windsor CA           4.7               7.0                514
    Labrador                         0.0               0.5                508

For further information:

For further information: Chris Janes, Senior Market Analyst, NL, (709)

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