Vacancy rates up in Fort St. John and Dawson Creek

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Erica Fisher

Erica is a reporter for Moose FM and in Fort St. John, B.C. She grew up in Victoria, B.C. and received her Bachelor's Degree in Journalism from Concordia University in Montreal, Quebec.

Dawson Creek has seen another large rise to 9.9 per cent from 3.5 per cent this year. It was only 1.4 per cent the year before. 

Overall, vacancy rates in British Columbia have dropped slightly, from 2.7 per cent in October 2011 back down to 2.4 per in 2013, which is where it sat in 2011 as well. The report claims this is due to higher employment numbers among the younger population, who CMHC says tend to rent, along with an increase in international migration. 

Rent in both northern cities also increased, from an average of $898 a month in 2012 to $940 in FortSt. John and $869 to $926 a month in Dawson Creek.  The biggest increases came three or more bedroom apartments in FortSt. John, which increased 6.9 per cent. Two bedrooms are right behind, with a rent increase of 5.4 per cent. It now costs an average of $796 to rent a one bedroom apartment in the Energetic City, up from $784 last year and $1,041 for a two bedroom apartment. 

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Rents between the two cities is very similar across the board, but Dawson Creek is still more expensive. A one bedroom apartment in the Mile 0 City runs an average of $799, while a two bedroom apartment costs 1,041 to rent. 

Rent percentage increases are calculated only using buildings that were existing in both 2012 and 2013, so as not to skew results.

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