February 22nd, 2024

Social housing wait-list grows 27 per cent in Metro Vancouver

By The Canadian Press on December 22, 2023.

The downtown Vancouver skyline is seen at sunset, as houses line a hillside in Burnaby, B.C., on Saturday, April 17, 2021. Data from Metro Vancouver show the queue for social housing in the region has spiked in the past year, with 18,865 households on the wait-list, mostly seniors and families. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

VANCOUVER – Data from Metro Vancouver show the queue for social housing in the region has spiked in the past year, with 18,865 households on the wait-list, mostly seniors and families.

Metro Vancouver’s Housing Data Book for December 2023 shows BC Housing’s wait-list grew 27 per cent since 2022 in the region that is made up of 21 municipalities and other administrative areas.

The data book says homelessness is up 33 per cent since 2020 and 122 per cent since 2005, even as more supportive housing is being built.

It says low vacancy rates have seen rent more than double since 2002, including a 30 per cent jump in median rental rates in the past five years.

Metro Vancouver says the BC Housing wait-list isn’t “exhaustive” for all regional social housing needs and the last five years have seen wait-lists grow massively in “outlying municipalities.”

These include Langley, which saw a 113 per cent jump in its wait-list, Delta with a 108 per cent jump, and Richmond, which saw an 82 per cent increase.

A news release from Metro Vancouver says the data book provides “a comprehensive look at the region’s housing market and the people impacted by it.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Dec. 22, 2023.

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