No rental short­age, says land­lord group

Calgary Herald - Calgary Herald New Condos - - Front Page - MARTY HOPE

There is no short­age of rental apart­ments in Cal­gary, says a re­cent sur­vey.

“I would say that prob­a­bly 20,000 apart­ments turn over ev­ery year in all ar­eas of the city,” says Gerry Bax­ter, ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of the Cal­gary Apart­ment As­so­ci­a­tion.

His com­ments came af­ter the release of the sec­ond an­nual Cal­gary Rental Mar­ket Turnover Sur­vey, a co-op­er­a­tive ef­fort be- tween as­so­ci­a­tion and Canada Mort­gage and Hous­ing Corp.

The sur­vey was done dur­ing April and May based on 2008 data.

The main rea­son the turnover in apart­ments oc­curs is more renters are tak­ing ad­van­tage of low fi­nanc­ing costs and re­duced house prices to get into own­er­ship, says the sur­vey

“We found a turnover rate of 39 per cent based on re­sponses from CAA mem­ber­ship,” says Brenda Mullis, busi­ness strate­gies an­a­lyst for the Prairies and Ter­ri­to­ries for CMHC.

The sur­vey re­sults were based on re­sponses from 68 man­agers of 116 build­ings, ac­count­ing for nearly 11,300 rental apart­ments across Cal­gary.

Out of that to­tal, 4,355 units turned over last year.

Bax­ter says when th­ese num­bers are ex­trap­o­lated over the com­plete in­ven­tory of rental apart­ments — well in ex­cess of 50,000 units — the turnover rate would reach about 20,000.

“There are plenty of apart­ments avail­able de­spite a va­cancy rate that has been re­ported to be about four per cent,” he says.

Mullis says sur­vey re­spon­dents were asked to give the three main causes for turnover.

Af­ter tak­ing the op­por­tu­nity to get into own­er­ship, the next two re­sponses were job re­lo­ca­tion and evic­tion.

Evic­tion is the new­est mem­ber of the top three, re­plac­ing fi­nan­cial con­straints due to rent rate in­creases.

The high­est turnover rate in the city occurred in the down- town sec­tor at 54 per cent.

Of the 1,601 turnovers last year, the vast ma­jor­ity were one-and two-bed­room units.

Gerry Bax­ter of the Cal­gary Apart­ment As­so­ci­a­tion.

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