KELOWNA – If you’re a frustrated renter looking for a place in Kelowna, there’s a reason why you’re having such a tough time.
According to a new Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation report, Kelowna has one of the tightest apartment rental markets in Canada.
In B.C., Kelowna is tied with Fort St John for the lowest apartment vacancies in the province at 1.5 per cent and nationwide is third overall in major centres, behind only Edmonton and Calgary (both at 1.4 per cent).
This time last year, that vacancy rate was 4.8 per cent.
It’s great news for property managers.
“We are 100 per cent leased now. If I had a unit to rent now, I’d have it rented in the next two hours, it would be gone,” says Premier Canadian Properties manager, Brian Pedersen.
He had a renter come in and pay $2,500 for a two bedroom in downtown Kelowna, without even seeing the apartment first.
“He was willing to take the unit cash deposit sight unseen, just to lock it up. That’s how desperate people are at this point.”
“It’s stressful at times we just have to keep optimistic, stay optimistic,” says renter Florinda Lorenzo.
Her family of four will soon be without a place to live, as the home their currently in was recently sold.
She says it’s not only tough to find a place to live, but also a unit in her price range.
“I just have to keep looking and hoping.”
As for if you’re a renter competition in this red hot market, property managers have this advice.
“If you see it, scoop it up and get in your application in quick. Make sure your records are clean and you have good references and when moving on leaving [the apartment] in good shape and make sure your ex landlord is very happy,” says Dawn Surette with Argus Properties.
According to local property managers, two bedrooms are the hottest commodity.