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Why Canadians are evicted from their homes

August 8, 2023, 11:00 a.m. (EDT)

Moving ranks among the most stressful life events. Being forced out of your home through eviction undoubtedly rachets the stress level higher. In 2021, 7% of Canadians told us they had been evicted at some point in their life. Here’s why…

Landlord selling property is the leading cause of eviction in Canada

Over one-third (37%) of the Canadians we spoke to in 2021 told us they had been evicted at some point because their landlord was selling the property.

Just over one in four people (26%) said they were evicted because the landlord was moving back “home.”

Conflict with the landlord was the third leading cause of eviction, reported by 13% of Canadians who had been evicted at some point.

Further, 1 in 10 evictees (10%) were evicted through demolition, conversion or major repairs.

“Even when the tenant has a right to return after the work is done, they may not be able to afford any related increases to their rent,” says Chief of Housing Need Projects, Jeff Randle, adding, “Temporary accommodations that are suitable and affordable may also not be available when the renovations are being carried out.”

Fewer than 1 in 10 Canadians (8%) we spoke to said they were evicted for falling behind in rent.

Homeowners are not immune from eviction, with 4% of people who had been evicted at some point having lost their home in every sense of the word.

Over one in six Canadians who had been evicted at some point in the past in 2021 were evicted from social and affordable housing.

Moving generally means paying higher rent

Never mind the aggravation and costs associated with moving, recent renters across Canada are paying more than those who don’t move.

An upcoming report looks at the prices recent renters (those who had moved within the past 12 months) were paying in 2021 compared with existing renters.

The median monthly shelter cost paid by “recent renters” was $1,320 in 2021, compared with $1,020 for existing renters.

Agency analyst Aaron Gorski notes that “Ontario accounted for 9 of the 10 cities with the largest differences in shelter costs between recent and existing renters.” The largest difference was in Toronto, where the median monthly shelter cost for recent renters was $510 more than for existing renters ($1,940 compared with $1,430).

When there is no place to call home

Studies suggest that approximately 235,000 Canadians fall into some form of homelessness every year. There are two shades of homelessness. The visible, such as a homeless shelter or a tent encampment in a city park, and hidden homelessness, when people stay with friends or relatives until they can find a home of their own.

Approximately 1 in 50 Canadians we asked in 2021 told us they had been homeless at some point and 1 in 10 said they had experienced hidden homelessness.

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Contact information

For more information, contact the Statistical Information Service (toll-free 1-800-263-1136514-283-8300; or Media Relations (