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The Cheapest and Most Expensive Places to Rent in Canada in 2020

Rent is expected to increase in most big cities including Toronto, Ottawa, and Montreal.

by Anne Gaviola
Dec 13 2019, 7:29pm

Toronto photo (left) by Illia Cherednychenko. Saskatoon photo (right) by Banter Snaps. Both via Unsplash.

If you found scraping together enough money to make rent this year tough, it’s about to get even worse.

Rents are about to go up three percent more on average in 2020, according to a national forecast released Friday by real estate platform Rentals.ca. But if you live in a major city in Ontario and Quebec, expect to pay a lot more next year.

The biggest price hikes are forecast for Mississauga (8 percent), Ontario, Toronto (7 percent), Montreal (5 percent), Ottawa (4 percent). This is for all types of rentals including houses.

That means that if you’re renting a one-bedroom home in Toronto for the average monthly rent of $2,314, you can expect it to jump to $2,475, an extra $161 a month.

Vancouver has the most expensive average monthly rents for two-bedroom places in Canada ($3,058) and the 2020 predicted rent increase for apartments there is 3 percent. Meaning average rent for a two-bedroom is forecast to get up to $3,149 next year, an extra $92 a month.

Not everyone’s rent is expected to go up though—major cities in Alberta, where the economies are struggling—will catch a break. The forecast is for rents in both Edmonton and Calgary to come down by 1 percent next year. The average place in Edmonton is $1,175 which means it’s expected to come down to $1,163 in 2020 and a typical place in Calgary will be $1,216 according to the forecast.

The cheapest major city for rent in Canada is Saskatoon, where an average place goes for $984 a month, followed by St. John’s Newfoundland ($999) and Regina ($1,031), Saskatchewan. Neither of them were included in the 2020 forecast, so we don’t know where experts think prices are heading.

While the increases are bad news, they are actually low compared to what we’ve seen in the last couple of years. In 2019, the biggest apartment rent increases in the country were in Hamilton (25 percent), Ontario, Scarborough (23 percent), Ontario and Quebec City (22 percent). The biggest decreases in apartment rent were in Fort McMurray (7 percent), Alberta and Edmonton (7 percent).

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