Fleeing Toronto’s downtown core for one of the nearby GTA cities won’t get you significantly cheaper rent, according to a new national rent report from Rentals.ca.
Seven GTA cities fell in the top 15 of the 35 most expensive cities to rent in, for January in all of Canada.
The list was topped by Vancouver and Toronto despite seeing rental prices decline significantly over the past year — Toronto dropped about 22% on the rental prices of one-bedrooms year-over-year.
The two largest cities in Canada, however, were closely followed by Mississauga, coming in at third place. Rentals in Mississauga averaged about $1,779 for a one-bedroom in January — only $32 cheaper than the average Toronto one-bedroom rent — and $2,097 for a two-bedroom.
Although interest in Mississauga appears to have been soaring over the past year, these prices mark a year-over-year decline in rent of 7% for one-bedrooms and 8.5% for two-bedrooms.
Etobicoke and Richmond Hill came in fourth and fifth on the list, respectively. The two areas also saw year-over-year declines in rental prices, with Etobicoke’s one- and two-bedrooms both going down by more than a staggering 15%.
In eighth place was North York, which in January was averaging a one-bedroom rental price of $1,684 and a two-bedroom price of $2,063.
Markham, which came ninth, had one of the largest year-over-year declines in two-bedroom rent prices, dropping by 19.3%. Oshawa followed closely in 10th place with an average one-bedroom price just $4 cheaper than Markham.
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Brampton, which finished 14th on the list, saw one of the smaller declines in rent prices over the past year, going down by 2.7% for one-bedrooms and 4.3% for two-bedrooms.
Although the GTA’s rent prices don’t seem that far off from Toronto’s and are also continuing to drop, the report notes that the GTA as a whole fared much better than Toronto over the past year when it comes to rental price per square foot.
Toronto rentals dropped 20%, while GTA rentals only went down 11%.
For any renters looking to lock in a cheaper rental price, whether in Toronto or the GTA, this year is the year to do it. The report says that “given the latest COVID-19 numbers and the slow vaccination rollout, a return to work en masse is not expected for several months,” which could push any rental price recovery landlords were hoping for this year until 2022.