GTA condos, rental apartments are almost 400 sq ft smaller than in 1998

Jun 2 2022, 9:15 pm

Condominium and rental apartments in the Greater Toronto Area have shrunk significantly over the past two decades.

Buildings completed in 1998 have a median unit size of 979 square feet, while those finished in 2022 are notably smaller, with a median unit size of 596 square feet.

Fifty-nine percent of units completed this year are one-bedrooms and 7% are studios. The last time the median unit size was over 700 square feet was in 2012.

The data was collected from condo and rental apartments listed on TorontoRentals.com over the past 40 months and released in the site’s latest Toronto GTA Rent Report, conducted in conjunction with Bullpen Research & Consulting.

The sharpest drop in unit sizes was seen from 2001 to 2002, when the median declined from 825 square feet to just 720 square feet. A similar drop was seen from 1999 to 2000.

Researchers attributed the shrinking size to “investors jumping back into the condo market” in the early 2000s.

The largest increase in unit sizes was seen after the 2008 economic crash and after the first year of the pandemic. Median unit sizes increased by 50 square feet in both 2009 and 2021.

Bullpen Research & Consulting and TorontoRentals.com

While condo and rental apartments have been shrinking in size, their prices haven’t followed suit.

Across the GTA, the average monthly rental rate in April 2022 was $2,204, a yearly increase of 12%. According to the Toronto GTA Rent Report, smaller units saw larger price increases.

The average rent for a studio was up 9% year-over-year in April, while one-bedroom units increased 8% annually. Rent for two-bedroom units rose 12% from April 2021.

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