How has the pandemic affected the Metro Vancouver rental market?
VANCOUVER -- We're learning more about how the pandemic has changed Metro Vancouver's rental market over the last year.
The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation has released its 2020 Rental Market Survey.
CMHC's survey suggests both the overall vacancy rate and the average rent in Vancouver have gone up.
The vacancy rate has increased to 2.6 per cent, from 1.1 per cent, according to the survey.
CMHC says this is due to higher supply and lower demand over the last year.
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Newer apartments in central areas like Vancouver and Surrey drove the increase in vacancies, but it actually dropped in suburban areas like Langley and White Rock.
The average rent is up two per cent in Vancouver, sitting at just over $1,500. To put that in perspective, the average rent for a one-bedroom apartment is $1,400.
However, those new to the rental market are paying a lot more than that, with rents about 21 per cent higher.
Experts suggest some of the changes are due to a large number of young people and others who work in the service industry losing their jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic.
They make up a significant portion of the rental market.
Additionally, the closure of the border means very little immigration to Metro Vancouver.
Lastly, the shift to online learning means many students, especially international students, have moved away from campus.
With a report from CTV News Vancouver's Regan Hasegawa