This report released May 19 by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities “lays out an action plan for more resilient and prosperous housing in Canada. The scope and range of problems are too complex for any one order of government to solve alone. It requires collaborationand leadership to implement an effective housing action plan where all Canadians can access adequate housing.”
CityHallWatch comment: While the report contains useful data, analysis, observations, and recommendations, perhaps it is following the trend to ignore huge gaps in the supply-demand equation. The emphasis is upon supply. Upon a quick review, there is no clear mention of data gaps in house purchases and ownership, or some of the key drivers of demand in the Metro Vancouver region, such as speculation, money laundering, global money flows, absentee owners, empty homes, land assembly, and so on. Nevertheless, this report will be useful reading.
It will take significantly more public pressure to get our governments and leaders to address topics such as those.
Download the report (1.1 MB): http://www.fcm.ca/Documents/reports/FCM/Built_to_Last_Strengthening_the_foundations_of_housing_in_Canada_EN.pdf
Cracks in the foundation 3
The rising cost of homeownership 5
The strain on Canada’s rental market 6
Why affordable rent options matter 8
More households at risk 10
Declining federal funding and market failure 12
Regeneration and repair of aging assets 14
Limited funding to expand affordable housing 15
Housing First strategies and affordable housing 16
BUILDING A STRONGER FOUNDATION 17
APPENDIX A: Reductions in Federal Off-Reserve Social Housing Spending 20
LIST OF FIGURES
Figure 1: The Rising Rate of Home Ownership 3
Figure 2: Index of House Prices and Income Levels (National Averages) 5
Figure 3: Ability to Buy a Home 5
Figure 4: The Low Volume of Purpose-Built Rental 6
Figure 5: Percentage of Investor-Owned Condominium Units Occupied by Renters 8
Figure 6: The Dramatic Decline in Lower-Rent Units 9
Figure 7: Increasing Affordability Burdens (Paying >30%) 10
Figure 8: Incidence and Change (2006–2011) Among Renters with Acute Affordability
Challenges (Paying >50%) 11
Figure 9: The Declining Number of Families Helped by Federal Subsidies 12
Figure 10: The Dramatic Decline in Federal Funding for Existing Social Housing 13
Figure 11: The Shifting Burden of Subsidies (Operating and Capital) 14
Examples of media coverage:
Municipal study warns of looming housing problem. (CTV News quoting The Canadian Press, 19-May-2015) Excerpts: A report from the Federation of Canadian Municipalities says the country has a housing problem that is going to require action from all levels of government… The study says the long, steady decline in federal subsidies for social housing has left provinces, territories and municipalities struggling against market forces that are making it increasingly difficult for low- and modest-income renters…The study proposes federal tax credits be used to stimulate the construction of new affordable rental units; that Ottawa commit to maintain and make permanent its current level of funding; and that a national strategy on homelessness and affordable housing be made permanent.
Municipal study sees looming housing problem, urges Ottawa to stay engaged (Vancouver Sun, 19-May-2015). Excerpt: Insecure housing brings with it costs that rebound throughout the labour market and the economy, says the study.The study proposes federal tax credits be used to stimulate the construction of new affordable rental units; that Ottawa commit to maintain and make permanent its current level of funding; and that a national strategy on homelessness and affordable housing be made permanent.