Between 2016 and 2021, the average monthly rent and utilities in Prince George rose from $928 per month to $1,083 per month, according to data released on Tuesday by the Canadian Rental Housing Index.
The index used data gathered during the 2016 and 2021 national Census. Rents in Prince George rose 16.7 per cent between 2016 and 2021, while across B.C the average cost of rent rose by 30 per cent. The average monthly rent and utilities in B.C was $1,492 in 2021.
While rents in Prince George were up, the percentage of renting households spending 30 per cent or more of their income on rent and utilities dropped between 2016 and 2021.
In 2021, 29 per cent of Prince George renters spent more than 30 per cent of their income on rent and utilities and nine per cent spent more than 50 per cent of their income. That’s down from 2016, when 40 per cent of renters spent 30 per cent of their income on housing, and 17 per cent spent more than 50 per cent.
Rising incomes among renting households in Prince George could be responsible for the change. In 2016, the average household income of renters was $52,638 (median value $42,051), while in 2021 the average household income of renters had risen to $68,200 (median value $56,800).
The percentage of Prince George renting households living in over-crowded conditions rose from six per cent in 2016 to eight per cent in 2021. Across B.C. an average of 11 per cent of rental households are over-crowded.
In Prince George in 2021, nine per cent of households renting lived in homes needing major repairs, higher than the B.C. average of seven per cent.
Between 2016 and 2021, the number of households renting in the city rose from 9,430 to 10,100.