Vacancy rates lower throughout province

    ST. JOHN'S, June 5 /CNW/ - 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 were lower throughout the province in all centres surveyed. The
combined total vacancy rate came in at 3.2 per cent, with 166 of the
5,099 units surveyed sitting vacant. This represents a reduction of one
percentage point from last April's rate of 4.2 per cent.
    The St. John's CMA rental market posted a vacancy rate of 3.7 per cent
compared to 4.6 per cent last April, with 136 units vacant out of the
3,704 units surveyed. "With a notable improvement in the labour market,
positive net-migration should continue to hold the vacancy rate down within
the region," said Chris Janes, Senior Market Analyst with CMHC in Newfoundland
and Labrador. "With house prices continuing to advance, demand for rental is
expected to remain strong," added Janes.
    The tightest rental market, Corner Brook CA, had a 0.6 per cent vacancy
rate during the April survey. Vacancy rates for other centres surveyed were
Gander CA at 2.5 per cent versus 4.6 per cent last year and Grand
Falls-Windsor CA at 3.6 per cent compared to 4.7 per cent one year ago.

    As Canada's national housing agency, CMHC draws on over 60 years of
experience to help Canadians access a variety of quality, environmentally
sustainable, and affordable homes - homes that will continue to create vibrant
and healthy communities and cities across the country.

    (Ce document existe également en français.)

    (1) 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 2008 rental market survey and the October 2007 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.

                        Vacancy Rate and Average Rent
                               by Major Centre
                          Newfoundland and Labrador
                                              Vacancy Rate      2 Bdrm Rent
    Centre                                   Apr-07  Apr-08   Apr-07  Apr-08
    St. John's CMA                              4.6     3.7      602     614
    Bay Roberts CA                             12.5     (xx)     422     464
    Corner Brook CA                             2.4     0.6      476     516
    Gander T                                    4.6     2.5      490     504
    Grand Falls-Windsor CA                      4.7     3.6      514     565
    Newfoundland & Labrador 10,000+             4.2     3.2      560     581

For further information:

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

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