toronto rent prices

Rent costs are growing two times faster than incomes in Toronto

It's getting progressively harder to make ends meet as a renter in Toronto, especially for people under 35, according to the Toronto Foundation's 2019 Vital Signs Report.

This comprehensive analysis of trends and issues affecting quality of life for Toronto residents was published on Tuesday, painting an overall picture of a fast-growing city plagued by "increasingly entrenched inequality."

Young people, low income groups, newcomers and members of racialized communities were found to be "experiencing significantly worse outcomes when compared with white, long-time residents" across most major issue areas examined in the report, including work, health, civic engagement, safety and transportation.

More than 10 pages of the 144-page-long report are dedicated to housing in particular — an issue that Toronto has been struggling to get a grip on for many years.

"Housing has rapidly become a crisis in Toronto, with ballooning costs for rent and housing, and unprecedented population increases that are expected to remain high for years, with an insufficient support system to help those who cannot afford to live here," reads the report.

"Housing costs are growing four times faster than income, and rent costs are growing two times faster than income over the last decade."

With the average condo now renting for $2,235 per month (up from just under $1,483 in 2008), the typical worker now needs to earn nearly $70,000 per year to afford their own one-bedroom apartment within the city.

A lack of rental supply is pushing rent prices ever higher as demand in the city grows, but the affordability issue is more than one of supply vs. demand for renters.

Incomes have remained virtually stagnant amidst rising rent costs, especially for the city's youngest residents.

"Challenging trends are seen for young adults (25 to 34 years old) in the city of Toronto," reads a portion of the report.

"They have seen no income growth whatsoever in the last 35 years after adjusting for inflation, while those 35 to 64 years old have had their income increase by 29 per cent."

People over the age of 64 have seen their incomes rise by a whopping 53 per cent over the same time period, lending reinforcement to the widely-held theory that rich boomers really are screwing over young people in Toronto.

Lead photo by

Patrick Younger


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