How much you need to earn to rent a 2-bedroom apartment in every major Canadian city
While many say that property is the best investment, not everyone has the opportunity to own a house or condo, or wants to.
People who opt out by choice are not as misguided as some might think. There are actually those who disagree with the whole “buying a house is the only smart choice” thing, most notably Nobel Prize-winning Yale economist Robert Shiller, who says that “If you look at the history of the housing market, it hasn’t been a good provider of capital gains.”
Does that mean you should not buy a house? Maybe not. But it’s not as black and white as many would have you believe.
Should you wish to purchase, we looked at what you need to earn to buy an average priced house in major Canadian cities here.
For those who opt to rent, we decided to look at the average rent price of a two-bedroom apartment by city, and calculate what you need to earn as a household to rent one.
According to Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, “your monthly costs (including rent, electricity, heat, water and municipal services) should be less than 30% of your before-tax household income.” So, I left 5% for utilities, allowing 25% of your before-tax income for rent. This is a commonly cited rule.
The formula, therefore, with X as the average rent price (taken from the CMHC’s annual Rental Market Report), is:
(2080 being the average number of hours worked in a year).
Vancouver/CMA has the highest rental price, followed by Toronto/CMA*.
Here is what your combined household income needs to be to rent the average two-bedroom apartment in each major Canadian city.
Average price of a 2-bedroom apartment: $888
888 x 4 x 12 = 42624 ÷ 2080 = 20.49
Income required to rent a 2-bedroom apartment in St. John’s: $42,624 or $20.49/hr
Average price: $1,005
1005 x 4 x 12 = 48240 ÷ 2080 = 23.19
Income required: $48,240 or $23.19/hr
Average price: $739
739 x 4 x 12 = 35472 ÷ 2080 = 17.05
Income required: $35,472 or $17.05/hr
Average price: $1,132
1132 x 4 x 12 = 54336 ÷ 2080 = 26.12
Income required: $54,336 or $26.12/hr
Average price: $1,251
1251 x 4 x 12 = 6004 ÷ 2080 = 28.86
Income required: $60,004 or $28.86/hr
Average price: $1,016
1016 x 4 x 12 = 48768 ÷ 2080 = 23.44
Income required: $48,768 or $23.44/hr
Average price: $1,079
1322 x 4 x 12 = 51792 ÷ 2080 = 24.90
Income required: $51,792 or $24.90/hr
Average price: $1,041
1041 x 4 x 12 = 49968 ÷ 2080 = 24.02
Income required: $49,968 or $24.02/hr
Average price: $1,227
1227 x 4 x 12 = 58896 ÷ 2080 = 28.31
Income required: $58,896 or $28.31/hr
Average price: $1,322
1322 x 4 x 12 = 63456 ÷ 2080 = 30.50
Income required: $63,456 or $30.50/hr
Average price: $1,311
1311 x 4 x 12 = 62928 ÷ 2080 = 30.25
Income required: $62,928 or $30.25/hr
*Thanks to commenter “CS” who pointed out that I must have gotten the numbers for Vancouver wrong. I had actually used the Toronto city central area and the Vancouver CMA. I amended this to include the Toronto CMA as a whole, along with the Vancouver CMA. I apologize for the confusion. The numbers, again, are from the CMHC annual Rental Market report, to which I have linked above.