On the surface, it seems like Toronto is one of the most affordable cities in Canada.
In fact, according to the latest data from the Real Estate Board of Greater Toronto, renters in the city are paying an average of $1,091 per month on average, while the median price for a two-bedroom unit is $1.2 million.
In reality, however, a new report from the Toronto Real Estate Association has revealed the city is only slightly more expensive than the U.S. For renters in metro Toronto, the median monthly rent is $2,769, while in the rest of the city, it is $3,908.
While this difference in average monthly rent may seem insignificant, it could prove to be a major factor in attracting prospective renters.
“There’s no doubt that the average Toronto rent is cheaper than many other cities,” said Mark Tully, president of the Toronto real estate association.
“But it’s not all bad.
There are some areas where the median rent is higher than the average in Toronto, and those areas are in Toronto.
It’s not surprising that in those areas, it’s more affordable to rent.”
According to Tully and his fellow association members, the average rent for a Toronto rental is higher in some neighbourhoods than in others.
For example, the most expensive area for renters is the Bloor-Danforth area, which is located in Toronto’s downtown core.
The area, known for its booming nightlife, has a median rent for two-bedrooms at $2.9 million, which comes in just ahead of the $2 million price tag of the median unit in Vancouver.
In the area of the Etobicoke neighbourhood, the price for two bedroom units is $4.4 million, while a three-bedroom is at $5.4, according the Realtor website.
In a similar area in the Richmond Hill area, the rent is just under $4 million for a three bedroom unit.
“You see this sort of disparity in rental prices across the city,” said Tully.
“So we have this huge gap between the cost of living and the cost for a rental unit in Toronto.”
While the average rental price in Toronto may be lower than in other Canadian cities, the real estate industry has a long history of pushing renters to stay in the area where they live.
A recent report from Urban Analytics and Zillow shows that Toronto’s average monthly rental costs are among the highest in the country, with a median price of $3.8 million.
While the report also points out that the area’s median home price is $425,000, the report notes that Toronto homeowners are less likely to be renters than their neighbours.
“In this city, we’re going to have a housing shortage, and people are not going to rent because they don’t know if they’re going in the right area,” said Michael Sowinski, vice president of urban real estate at the Toronto-Dominion Bank.
“The problem is, we have a high cost of rent, and renters are not willing to pay that much more.
So that creates this huge affordability gap.”
While Toronto is a relatively small market in comparison to other Canadian metros, there are many areas in the Toronto area that are particularly affordable.
In order to see where your area ranks, head to Realtor’s website to see the average monthly price for the three bedrooms, the four bedrooms, and two- and three-bedroom units.