Alberta Landlords Association

Posts Tagged ‘Calgary’

Landlords – What Is On Tap With Vancancy Rates in 2013?

Tuesday, December 25th, 2012

January 1st, 2013

ALA happy new year

Calgary apartment vacancy rate decreases in 2012

Down to 1.3%

CALGARY — The apartment vacancy rate in the Calgary region averaged 1.3 per cent in October, down from 1.9 per cent last year, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp.’s Fall Rental Market Survey released Thursday.

“Employment growth and higher incomes, supported by Calgary’s expanding economy, continued to attract migrants and increased demand for rental units,” said Richard Cho, senior market analyst in Calgary for the CMHC.

The apartment crunch will likely continue as the CMHC is forecasting 20,000 net migrants to the Calgary area in 2012 after 11,200 net migrants in 2011.

“Alberta is once again seeing some very strong interprovincial migration these days and many of these people are arriving in Calgary,” said Todd Hirsch, senior economist with ATB Financial. “Typically before looking at buying a home, the recently-arrived will rent an apartment. That’s where a lot of the strong demand is coming from, and it’s pushing down the vacancy rate in the rental market.”

Recently, Sam Kolias, chairman and chief executive of Calgary-based Boardwalk Real Estate Investment Trust, told the Herald that the local rental market continues to see high demand as people keep moving to the province.

In the REIT’s third quarter, which ended September 30, it has 5,310 rental units in Calgary and the occupancy rate was 99.34 per cent, up from 98.89 per cent last year.

The apartment vacancy rate in most zones in Calgary declined from the previous year, said the CMHC report. Areas close to the downtown where there is a high concentration of employers continued to have among the lowest vacancy rates in the city, said the CMHC.

The vacancy rate in the Downtown zone reached 0.5 per cent in October, down from 1.0 per cent in October 2011.

The strong demand for rental accommodations combined with lower vacancies has led to an increase in rental rates in Calgary. Same-sample rents increased 6.1 per cent in October, following a 1.8 per cent rise in the previous year. Bachelor units and two-bedroom units recorded an increase of 7.4 per cent and 5.9 per cent, respectively. The average same-sample rent for three-bedroom units increased 4.2 per cent from a year earlier, said the agency.

Overall, the two-bedroom rent in Calgary averaged $1,152 in October, up from $1,087 last year. The Downtown and Beltline had among the highest average two-bedroom rents in the Calgary CMA at $1,240 and $1,222, respectively. The Southeast and Other Centres recorded the lowest two-bedroom rents in October, averaging $998 and $1,005, respectively.

Vacancies for rental condominium apartments declined to 2.1 per cent in October, down from 5.7 per cent in October 2011. The condominium rent in CMHC’s 2012 survey averaged $1,288 per month, down from $1,378 last year.

“Condominium apartment rents are typically higher compared to units in the purpose-built rental market as the buildings are generally newer and may include additional amenities such as a fitness centre, entertainment room, and heated underground parking,” said Cho.

Don Campbell, president of the Real Estate Investment Network in Canada, said the low vacancy rate wil lead to two things.

“Strong upward pressure on rents across the board, at all levels. Upward pressure on resale housing market first in 2013, then new home sales in 2014,” he said. “Look for the market to perform well in 2013 with values going up more quickly than 2012.”

Read more:


Apartment vacancy rates fall in Edmonton-area

CBC News

Posted: Dec 13, 2012 9:19 AM MT

Last Updated: Dec 13, 2012 9:17 AM MT

Read 8 comments8

The number of apartments available in the Edmonton area is half of what it was one year ago.

The vacancy rate sits at 1.7 per cent — down from 3.3 in 2011, according to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation’s Fall Rental Market Survey.

“Strong net migration and continued job growth in Edmonton contributed to the reduction in vacant rental apartments, as did a modest reduction in the supply of rental units,” senior market analyst David Lan said in a press release.

Three-bedroom suites reported the lowest vacancy rate at 1.1 per cent, followed by a 1.4 per cent vacancy rate in both two-bedroom and bachelor units, said the survey. One-bedroom units had the highest vacancy rate of two per cent.

The areas with the lowest vacancy rates were Leduc and West Jasper Place at 0.4 per cent and 0.6 per cent, respectively, followed by the University area and the southwest, both at 0.7 per cent.

The survey found as vacancy rates declined, rent levels moved upward.

Average rents jumped 3.7 per cent between October 2011 and October 2012 up from one per cent the year prior.

The average monthly rent for all apartment units in the Edmonton region was $965 in October 2012. Two-bedroom apartments rented for an average of $1,071 in October 2012, while one-bedroom units rented for an average of $882.



Thursday, December 13, 2012 – 10:44 AM
By Sara Buchan
Grande Prairie

More people looking for places to live as they come to Alberta to find work means this province is bucking the national trend for  vacancy rates.

Available rental properties in Grande Prairie and other urban centres are tougher to find — here, the vacancy rate is 1.8-percent as of October of this year.

Trying to find a two-bedroom apartment is the toughest — vacancy for that type of property has dropped over three-percent since October of last year.

And the average monthly rent for a two-bedroom apartment jumped nearly 9-percent in a year — to $1,004.

According to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, vacancy rates across Canada have gone up nearly half-a-percent since October of 2011.


Alberta Landlords – Get Leases, Applications and More in our Rental Kit!

Saturday, November 17th, 2012

November 16th, 2012



Now Alberta Landlords Can Get All the Leases, Applications and Other Documents You need in our Rental Kit!

Whether you are a first time landlord planning to self-manage your first investment property or a seasoned pro who wants to protect yourself.

Whether you are a based in busy downtown Calgary, in Edmonton, Lethbridge or your property is far away from any urban centre.

Being a landlord in Alberta is getting more complicated by the year and you need proper tools to succeed.

We spoke a couple of weeks ago about how members of the Alberta Landlords Association can get premium credit checks with Equifax for only $10/check.

Now we will introduce you to the Alberta Landlords Association Rental Kit.

As we grow and more people come to Alberta for work and a better quality of life, it’s great for landlords because it means more renters. However, with the influx of lots of great people, there are also some tenants who will cause you grief. These tenants will break leases, leave you with a big clean up bill or worse.

It’s important you use proper documents and services to protect yourself in case things go wrong.  Landlords who use professional documents will make sure ‘Tenants from Hell’ know they are dealing with an experienced and professional landlord.

Become and ALA member and get access to online documents you can download 24/7! 

Documents include:

1. Leases

2. Applications

3. Pet Rules

4. Condition Reports

5. Notice of Entry

…and much more.  Everything is designed in compliance with the Alberta Residential Tenancies Act.


Be a landlord aiming for success yet prepared for anything. Use proper leases, applications and more and find great tenants and make your rental business a huge success! Become a member of of the Alberta Landlords Association for only a one time fee and all the documents you will ever need.


Calgary Landlords – Get Ready for a New Safety Program For Secondary Suites

Thursday, November 1st, 2012

November 1st, 2012


New Pilot Program Targets Calgary Landlords With Secondary Suites

Landlords who have secondary suites in their homes are being target by the city of Calgary’s new safety program.

What’s the Aim of the Program?

According to the city, this is a new program aimed at safety.  More information is available at the Calgary Herald.

How So?

The new program will bring secondary suites up to the city building code.

Has the Program Started?

Yes.  Calgary is sending letters to fifty homes with secondary suites throughout the city.

What Do the Letter Say?

The letters inform these fifty landlord they have been singled out. Their homes will be inspected.

Inspected for…

The landlords will need to prove they have things such as land-use designation, needed permits, and if their secondary suite meet provincial building and fire codes.

According to building official chief Kevin Griffiths, the program will bring ‘awareness’ of safety issues. Any properties which don’t meet official code with face immediate consequences.

They will not inspect or help landlord out who are renting to Tenants from Hell.

 What Are The Consequences?

The city of Calgary says it will help home-owner fix up their secondary suites to meet the provincial code.

What Are Some of the Other Things Government Inspectors Will Look For?

Safety and zoning inspectors will be checking for working smoke detectors, clear exits, window size and other safety requirements.

How Long Does This Program Run For?

The program runs until April 2013. A report will go before council by June with the findings and recommendations.

What Prompted This?

Griffiths says he wants to to provide education to home-owners with secondary suites.  A huge fire in a basement apartment in 2009 that ended the lives of three tenants has brought this issue to the political table.

The landlords in this case was fined for not having proper smoke alarms and for having jail-like bars on the windows.

What’s the Goal of this Crack-Down?

One of the questions the pilot project aims to answer is whether owners are closing their suites because of the prohibitive costs of making them safe or the tricky path to legalization. It’s a great reason to make sure you rent to good tenants.


Calgary Landlords Get Ready for a New Program to Make Sure your Secondary Suites are Legal!


Calgary, Edmonton Vacancies Rates Decline!

Friday, June 29th, 2012

June 29th , 2012


The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation’s 2012 Spring Market Rental Market Survey was released.

What is the News for Alberta Landlords?

It’s good news for Alberta landlords.  For the urban centers the vacancy rate was 4.7% in April 2011.  This decreased to a vacancy rate of 3% in April 2012.

That’s Great News!

According to the CMHC’s senior Calgary market analyst, Richard Cho, fifteen of the largest seventeen markets in Alberta saw a decrease in vacancy rates.

According to Cho, “The reduction in vacancies was largely attributed to robust job growth and rising migration.”  Cho explained “the resulting household formation contributed to rental demand.”

What About Calgary?

Cho stated the apartment vacancy rate in April 2012 declined compared to last year.  In April 2011 it was 3.4%.  In April 2012 is declined to 2.5%

And Edmonton?

According to the CHMC’s senior market analyst for Edmonton the news is even better.  In 2011 the vacancy rate was 4.7% and dropped to 2.7% in 2012!    Christina Butchart said the 2012 Edmonton vacancy rate is the lowest since Spring, 2007.

Exactly Why are Rents Going Up?

The decrease is largely due to a strong economy, more jobs, and increased migration flows.  Cho stated it’s all about supply and demand.  He added that as vacancy rated drop and there is stronger demand for rental properties, rental rates are also going up.

Can You Provide Me With and Example on How Rents Are Rising?

According to Cho, rents increase 5% from 2011 to 2012 for a two bedroom rental in Calgary.  In Edmonton, rents are up 2.2% compared to last year.

It looks like the future is bright for Alberta landlords!

Tenants Out For “Revenge” Forcing Calgary Landlords Out of Business

Tuesday, March 6th, 2012

 March 6th, 2012

A recent report in the Calgary Herald details how tenants are forcing Calgary second suits to shut down.

Landlord Mchel Selim came to Canada thirteen years ago from Syria.  When he first arrived, he could only afford a basement suite.  Selim is proud he is now in a position to own investment properties and rent out basements suites to others who want low cost rental housing.

Selim was renting to a single Mother and her daughter when he was reported for having an illegal secondary suite.  Later he received a another notice for another property he owns.  This will force the tenant to leave and Selim will receive no income.

Selim understands if the notices to shut down were due to neighbors upset with the tenants displaying bad behavior or arguments over parking.  However, both of the government notices were by tenants angry at their landlord!

Tools of Vengeance

The first notice was by the tenant who lived in the upstairs unit who was upset the landlord complained about friends living with him without paying rent.  The second notice was due to the downstairs tenant angry about how the landlord was treating her friend who rented the upstairs unit.

According to Selim, both complaints were fueled by tenants desire for ‘revenge’ against him.

He also believes both reports were made in bad faith.

There were 380 reports against unregulated suites in 2011.   They continue at the same pace in 2012.  When the rules are enforced, landlords are essentially helpless to do anything.

The situation even frustrates the head of the Calgary compliance branch.  City staff are often used by angry tenants as tools of vengeance instead of being contacted out of real concern for safety or health codes.

What is the Government Doing About this?

Calgary mayor Naheed Nenshi has attempted to get City Council to relax secondary suite bylaws.  However, so far he hasn’t been successful.

According to Mayor Nenshi:

“They’re not the most unsafe ones, or the most dangerous ones, or the ones that are causing the biggest problems in the neighbourhood. They’re the ones people complain about for one reason or another.”

“And so, yet again, the system is ridiculous. We’re pretending we’re doing something about the situation, when all we’re doing is addressing a tiny fraction of the problem, based entirely on whether you have an angry tenant or angry neighbour.”

Next week council will discuss possible alternative ways  of enforcement.  However, council is split on the issue and the Mayor’s allies predict nothing will change prior to the next election.

So Why Don’t Landlords Simply Follow the Law? 

Ald. Andre Chabot represents an east end ward which has traditionally had most of the citys unregistered secondary suites.  Chabot states he will push for tough enforcement policies which are not only based on tenant or neighbor complaints.  According to Chabot,   “If you’re going to have two suites in a house, you should be paying increased taxes.”

However, rezoning a property to be legal under the legislation is not only costly and complex, politicians get the ‘final say.’   In 2011 eight homeowners applied to make their properties legal. Three were refused.  Those voting them down included Chabot.

According to Selim, it’s so complicated he will avoid the process and instead apply to construct a proper new duplex on his large lot!

Landlord Gizella Heiter also states she won’t bother trying to follow the government rules by rezoning.  She had an unhappy tenant call 311 to report the suite in her basement in 2010.

Heiter explains the inspector sent even complimented how nice the rental suite was…but it was still an illegal suite.

While the former tenant found another place to rent, Heiter now gets around the bylaw by renting her basement out without a kitchen.  According to the law if the basement doesn’t have a kitchen it isn’t illegal.

Heiter says she now rents to single guys who are happy with only a hot plate.


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