Category Archives: Market Research

Question: Who Are The Target Renters For New Rentals?

Here are two important facts it is essential to understand about new rentals and their target renters: Overlooked Fact #1: Anybody and everybody can be a renter. No really, it’s true. Readers who work for property management firms should think about the rental buildings they manage: can you provide a profile of a typical renter? You can’t because your buildings… Read more »

Toronto Star Article: “Toronto’s Rents Were Supposed To Drop”

Recently the Toronto Star published (on March 21, 2021) a long article examining vacancy rates and average rents across the city of Toronto. You can read the article via the link below (the article might be behind a paywall). https://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2021/03/20/toronto-rents-were-supposed-to-drop-as-people-fled-the-city-during-covid-19-the-data-tells-a-much-different-story.html This article uses data gathered by CMHC and explains that in most neighbourhoods in Toronto average rents increased from 2019… Read more »

Question: How Fast Will New Rentals Be Absorbed?

To start, let’s state the obvious: the easiest way to ensure your new rental building leases quickly and starts generating revenues as soon as possible is to ask rents which are affordable or ‘attainable’. But few, if any, developers have the luxury of asking rents that the bulk of renters can afford. The reality is that every developer, given development… Read more »

Question: What Rents Can New Rentals Get?

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Choosing asking rents for new purpose-built rentals is one of the key tasks which developers need to get right if they want their new rentals to be successful, both in terms of being absorbed into the housing supply in a timely manner, and in terms of generating the highest possible rent revenues. If your rents are too low your building… Read more »

Three Questions Developers Always Ask

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In my experience as a consultant developers with a new rental building either in the planning stages or under construction almost always ask three important questions. Their first question is almost always “What rents can we get?” Rents make up the bulk of revenues and if rents aren’t high enough then the proposed project might not make sense financially. The… Read more »

Back From The Future: Consulting

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I’m just back from the future! When I started in this industry consulting was a pretty niche activity, with only a few firms (in Ontario) offering market surveys and other research and opinion services on a fee basis. Most clients were developers and property managers, either wanting to get ideas for a new rental development project or wanting ideas to… Read more »

Renters & Commute Times

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In a previous post dated August 5, 2020, I compared the percentage of households which are renting to the percentage of workers who use public transit to commute in Ontario’s ten largest cities and ten selected smaller cities. In this post, I add commute duration (measured as the percentage of workers who spend an hour or more commuting to the… Read more »

What Types Of Housing Are Being Rented? Part II

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In this post (a follow-up to my post dated November 4, 2020), I use housing data from the Census and CMHC to separate rentals into purpose-built and non-purpose-built for the GTA’s major cities, adding owner-occupied units. The number of non-purpose-built rentals by type is calculated by subtracting purpose-built rentals from total rentals. The charts below show the results. The most… Read more »

Staying Put: Non-Movers in Census Data

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One of the more obscure data points in the Census is what Statistics Canada calls “mobility,” the number of people who moved or didn’t move. In the Census this is measured as the number of people who were living at the same or a different address one year before or five years before, and, if they moved during that period,… Read more »

What Types of Housing Are Being Rented? Part I

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That’s the question. What’s the answer? Most people when they think of rental housing they think of tall concrete apartment towers clustered in Toronto or Mississauga. It’s true that in most of Ontario’s larger cities multi-unit apartment buildings constitute the bulk of the rental supply, but many cities it’s a much smaller part of the supply than we realize. So… Read more »