Canada’s New Homes Are 80% More Likely To Be Landlord Owned Since 2001

Canadian real estate owners are doubling down on their windfall and becoming landlords. Statistics Canada (Stat Can) Census 2021 data reveals a boom in new homes used as rentals. Low rates have helped investors outcompete first-time homebuyers, as institutions have warned. New supply has seen the smallest share go to end users in decades, according to the latest data. 

Canada’s Recently Built Homes Are 80% More Likely To Be Rented Than Two Decades Ago

Well over a third of Canada’s newly constructed homes were bought by landlords. The share of homes constructed from 2016 to 2021 occupied by renters jumped to 40.4%, shows Census data. It was an increase of 11.9 points compared to homes built from 2011 to 2015, and 80% higher than those from 2001 to 2005. The latter period was a bottom for renter occupied units, climbing from there.

Canadian New Construction Homes Are Increasingly Owned By Landlords

The share of Canadian homes occupied by renters, grouped by year of construction.

Source: Statistics Canada; Better Dwelling.

The 1960s Rental Apartment Boom Is The Only Period That Competes

Only one period of construction exceeds this number, and it was the ’60s rental boom. Renters occupied 44.5% of homes built from 1961 to 1970. However, that boom was very different from what we’re seeing today.

Today’s new homes are largely condo apartments. The purchasing was fueled by cheap-but-astronomically large debts, with tenants essentially paying their landlord’s mortgage. Introducing a middle person between development and end-users adds a premium. As low rates inflated home prices, they also applied pressure on rents. 

Canada’s latest Census data reveals investors have been scooping up new supply. However, this isn’t new — it reinforces widespread data that previously revealed this. Earlier this year, our analysis showed new construction was geared towards investors. Bank of Canada (BoC) data showed low rates helped investors outcompete first-time buyers. RBC executives also explained investors are replacing first-time buyers at the bank. They even went so far as to call it a “sad” state of affairs. 

15 Comments

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  • Gen Z 2 months ago

    Are we as Canadians gonna live like serfs and live ten to a room like in overpopulated and poor cities?

    What is the use of life when you work your back off in a warehouse or factory for minimum wage, just to pay most of it to the Landlords in Toronto?

    Rents are insane in Toronto. A one-bedroom in Thorncliffe Park of all places are above $1,600 a month. It’s reaching $1,900 for a one-bedroom apartment in North York. How do Canadians afford this?

    • george 2 months ago

      whine all you can. NOBODY cares.
      here are the options:
      – bend over, be a good sheep and obey
      – MOVE out
      – grab pitchforks, organize a rebellion and eradicate this nonsense.
      what will you do?

    • lorraine st james 2 months ago

      same in BC primarily in Vancover and Vancouver Island.

    • Mr. Arithmatic 2 months ago

      A $1,600 a month one bedroom at 10 to a room is very affordable. It works out to $160 a month each — pocket change in today’s economy. You could probably go 5 to a room if you wanted to enjoy more privacy with money left over for food, utilities and one of those pumpkin spice lavatories you young folks seem to enjoy.

    • Eento Thaphutur 2 months ago

      They don’t. Permanent debt slaves. With money you can make choices, contribute to political parties and expand your influence and knowledge. If I was running the country why would I want the percentage of citizens who can do this to expand?

      – The Cynic

    • Ike 2 months ago

      By having more than one income.
      ie. Working two or three jobs

  • Scott 2 months ago

    Just another “unknowable” problem that’s “unsolvable…” unless of course your willing to forego getting re-elected then it’s easily solvable…

  • Alexsylva82 2 months ago

    Totally aggree GEN Z. It’s lunacy and complete insanity, Toronto is so saturated with dirty money from the past 5 plus years that has landlords renting mattresses for $ 800 let alone rooms to people in the city. It’s disgusting what this city has become.

    • Gen Z 2 months ago

      Where in Canada can one afford a place to rent on the median wage? Many jobs are not paying more than $17/hour for a job requiring a Bachelor’s Degree.

      Toronto seems to me that it’s only for the rich. Unfortunately, Canada is not like the USA where there are many cities and towns to choose from.

      The Toronto exodus of the work from home upper middle class has also created the same cost of living problems in smaller towns too.

  • Manpreet Solanta 2 months ago

    Justin doesn’t care

  • Eento Thaphutur 2 months ago

    “You will own nothing and be happy.”
    – Klaus Schwab

    Are you happy yet?

  • Craig 2 months ago

    Once the Contractors start to fall off the cliff the Feds will come to their rescue with tax breaks for purpose built rental housing.

  • Gen Z 2 months ago

    Canadians are choosing to install Pierre Poilevre who promising change.

    I’m not sure whether anyone is allowed to respond to the third option.

    The entire stretch of Parkdale has tents. Moss Park. Yonge and Eglinton has hundreds of unhoused people.

    I saw a family. A man, his wife, and their 10-year-old struggling to rent a home and they are living in a tent. They are complaining of the cold nights while sleeping in the tents. An able-bodied father and his wife can’t find a place to rent in Toronto.

    It’s not me alone who is complaining.

    The dystopia of Toronto is real.

  • Danny 2 months ago

    90% of new build buyers are foreigners , thats what this site stated months ago. the solution seems simple, ban foreign ownership of single family dwellings.

  • DeportYellows 2 months ago

    bring back the chinese immigration act and watch the housing problem dissapear.

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