Unit Mixes for New Rentals, Part III

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In the first post in this series I examined historical unit mix data to see what types of purpose-built rentals have been built in twenty of Ontario’s largest cities. The data shows that since 2000 developers have generally shifted to building more 2 bed units, while significantly reducing the number of studio and 3 bed units. In the second post in this series I discussed if historical unit mix trends can be used as a guide for new rental developments, and compared the advantages and disadvantages of different unit types. In this post, the third in this series, I attempt to illustrate the general points I made about unit types in the previous post by suggesting actual unit mixes.

The table below suggests unit mixes for new rental apartment and townhouse projects for a variety of geographic locations, using the same four geographic categories I used in my post on parking. Please note that the suggested unit mixes are hypothetical only.

The chart below is a more conceptual way of looking at the information in the table above. Again, this is hypothetical only.

Unit mixes for rental apartments should be dominated by 1 bed and 2 bed units, with a small number of studio units in urban buildings and 3 beds in suburban buildings (both optional). Unit mixes for rental townhouses should be a blend of 2 bed and 3 bed townhouses only. As already noted, the suggested unit mixes in the table are hypothetical only—there are a multitude of factors, in particular construction costs, which affect unit mixes, so no unit mix typology like the one I’ve suggested above can be considered definitive or conclusive.