Analysts say interest rates could ‘push more demand’ for rentals in Canada’s large cities, Hamilton

The latest rental data from two Canadian-based agencies suggests prices will be on the way up in 2022 as Canada's housing market shows cooling as interest rates increase. AP Photo/Matt Rourke, File

Rental data from two Canadian-based agencies is suggesting Canada’s rental market is heading back to pre-COVID-19 pandemic levels, with most markets bouncing back in early 2022 compared with the same period in 2021.

Both and, which aggregate data from vacant units, anticipate average rents in 2022 across Canada will continue an upward trend in the coming year spurred on by a cooling of the housing market in some provinces.

“On an annual basis, tenants are looking at rent that is over $100 more on average in March, compared to a year earlier, when the rental market was close to its lowest point during the pandemic,” says Ben Myers, president of Bullpen Research & Consulting.

“However, the pace of growth has cooled, with relatively flat rents over the last four months. Higher interest rates and a cooling ownership housing market could push more demand into the rental market this spring.”

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The exceptions this coming year will likely be major municipalities in British Columbia and Ontario.

Both regions continued to have the most expensive rental rates as of the end of March at $2,200 and $1,995, respectively, per month, according to the National Rent Report, published by and Bullpen Research.

B.C.’s average is up 18.9 per cent year over year while Ontario is up 10.8 per cent over the same period.

The average rent per square foot of a condo-style apartment in Toronto closed the gap on Vancouver month over month. The B.C. metropolis is still tops at an average rent per-square-foot price of $3.74 as of March while Toronto moved up to $3.72.

In February, the two cities were $3.84 and $3.66 per square foot, respectively.

The average monthly asking rent for Canadian properties on in March 2022 was $1,818 per month, an increase of 6.6 per cent annually, and down a couple of bucks from $1,820 month over month.

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In Hamilton, the two analysts estimate you’ll have to fork over $1,500 a month for a one-bedroom rental, with Rentals’ average at $1,527 and Zumper’s Canadian Rent Report putting the price at $1,470.

As of the end of March, put Hamilton 18th on its list of 35 cities in terms of the highest one-bedroom average monthly rent. The city was 10 of 23 on Zumper’s list.

A two-bedroom in the Hammer will run you somewhere around $1,900 with the rental firms’ averages at $1,980 and $1,850, respectively.

Both reported increases of just over $40 a month in Hamilton’s two-bedroom rentals month over month.

Year-over-year increases were $210 a month according to and about $163 by Zumper’s estimates.

Two-bedroom units in St. Catharines were very much in demand with about an 11 per cent increase year to year, bumping the average rate to $1,764, according to both agencies.

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A single bedroom is likely to run between $1,250 and $1,500 in the Niagara municipality.

In Toronto, Zumper reported a 10 per cent increase year over year to $1,920 for a single bedroom unit while Rentals put the cost closer to $2,023 with an estimated 11 per cent increase since the end of March 2021.

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The aggregate for a two-bedroom in Toronto is $2,613, with reporting a cost of $2,776 while Zumper revealed a $2,450 per month price.

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