Competition for apartments is back as Toronto’s rental market shrugs off its pandemic slump

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When Emma Griffiths came back to Toronto after working overseas for seven years, she found a good job in the tech sector. All she needed was an apartment.A couple of weeks before starting her job she went to work lining up apartment and condo viewings. But no sooner had Griffiths started her search late in August then she hit a snag on an inquiry about a one-bedroom-plus-den advertised for $2,600 a month.The realtor handling the lease for the condo told her she needed to commit to paying five months’ rent up front or there was no point even showing her the unit. Griffiths took a pass, aware that Ontario landlords aren’t allowed to demand more than first and last months’ rent. “In my case, the landlord was asking for $13,000 up front. A lot of people just don’t have that kind of cash, particularly in today’s economic conditions,” she said. Out-of-bounds requests and bidding wars on apartments are expected to become more common as Toronto’s pandemic rent contract
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