The strength Montréal’s housing market has continued to receive a lot of media attention. In our June 2018 Housing Market Insight (HMI) for Montréal, we looked at the buyer households in Greater Montréal. The goal was to learn who buys what, and where, so we could deepen our knowledge of the market.

While it’s interesting to learn about the characteristics of homebuyers, though, nearly half of Greater Montréal households rent. Our latest Montréal HMI therefore focuses on renter households.

Highlights on renter households

  • In each large geographic sector of Greater Montréal, people living alone accounted for about 50% of all renter households.
  • 35% of renter households had incomes below $30,000. The percentage rose to 60% for those with incomes below $50,000. Most of these renters were people living alone, and the results applied to the vast majority of sectors in Greater Montréal.
  • Households with incomes above $100,000 accounted for only 5% to 8% of renters in most sectors.
  • Gaps in median income between people living alone who were renters and those who bought a condominium varied between 65% and 155%. The lower incomes of certain Montréal-area renter households were therefore limiting their potential for homeownership.
  • Lower-income households generally moved less often than higher-income households. They also tended to move within the sector where they already lived. As well, there did not seem to be a significant movement of lower-income renter households to sectors of the CMA where the rents were less costly.

Focusing on renters to deepen our understanding of the housing market

Forty-five percent of households in Greater Montréal are renters. Given their demographic significance, it’s important to be aware of renter households’ characteristics.

Such data could help better design and measure the impacts of programs and policies intended for renter households. The data also complements the rental housing market information we already publish, providing a better overall view of this market.

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Date Published: April 3, 2019