Welcome to ApartmentResearch.ca, a website devoted to researching and discussing rental apartments and rental housing in southern Ontario. Why rental housing? According to the 2016 Census, 30% of dwellings in Ontario are rented. That’s over 1.5 million apartments, condos, townhouses, duplexes, single family houses, basement apartments, rooms, and trailers. That’s a huge portion of Ontario’s housing supply and it’s worth studying and talking about in detail.
This website is organized as a blog. Each post will examine a different aspect of rental housing, sometimes in detail and sometimes from a high level. I’m not going to be comprehensive or exhaustive with each topic. For that a sizeable book would need to be written—or at least tens of thousands of words—plus a huge amount of data would need to be gathered and analyzed. That’s not practical for me. What I’m going to do instead is to discuss different ways of thinking about these topics which will hopefully stimulate others to think. Except where other sources are cited, discussions and analysis are my opinions only. If you disagree with what I’ve written, that’s good, that’s my goal.
For the record, I’ve been a consultant in the rental housing space for over 15 years now, working mostly with private-sector developers of purpose-built rental apartments, townhouses, and student housing and occasionally working with public-sector (municipal) housing providers. I have studied rental housing markets across southern Ontario, from the province’s biggest cities to some of its smallest towns. I’m a big believer in the null hypothesis and that “do nothing” is always an option. I’m a big believer in always going back to first principles and not just piling assumptions on top of assumptions. I’m a big believer in applying Hitchens’s Razor and the “chicken-or-the-egg” rule. I’m a big believer in getting out of the office and touring buildings because that there is no substitute for market surveys conducted with your boots on the ground.
Let’s get started!