Most Ontarians find themselves moving further and further away from Toronto in hopes of finding cheaper rent. Unfortunately, that may not be possible anymore since several small Ontario cities just had the biggest rent spikes in Canada in the last month. According to PadMapper's monthly report, in some cities, the rent increased by as much as 5%.
The city that saw the biggest increases was St. Catherines. In January, the average price of rent for a one bedroom apartment went up 5.3% to $1200/month. This massive spike even earned the city an unfortunate spot on the top 10 list of Canada's most expensive rental markets.
Another city not far behind St. Catherines is Kitchener, where the average rent is $1150/month, an increase of 4.5%. Meanwhile in London, while the prices are lower to begin with, the rent increased by 5.2% in the last month. Now the average cost of a one-bedroom there is $1020/month.
These rent increases are especially concerning if you look at who is renting apartments in these cities. For example, St. Catherines and London are both major university cities, with Brock and Western making up big parts of their respective populations. That means the people being hit hardest by these increases are students.
Other university towns like Hamilton (McMaster) and Kingston (Queen's) also made the top 20 list. They didn't have increases in the past month like the others, but that doesn't mean students have it better there.
In fact, the average rent for a one-bedroom in Hamilton is holding steady at $1180/month while rent in Kingston is currently sitting at $1060/month.
Meanwhile, Toronto rent actually stayed the same over the past month. There was a 0% change in both the average one-bedroom and two-bedroom rental rates, but they were already Canada's highest to begin with. Currently, the average one-bedroom costs $2260/month.
On top of that, despite the lack of change in the past month, over the past year, Toronto's rental prices saw a major spike of 11.9%
While these small Ontario cities are taking home the prize for the highest increases in rent in January, the top 5 most expensive cities for rent are the same as always. Toronto holds the top spot, with Vancouver not far behind, followed by Burnaby, Montreal, and Victoria.