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Government to build 14,000 new rental homes for families and seniors across B.C. over next decade

VICTORIA, B.C. — Premier John Horgan announced today that the provincial government will be funding construction of 14,000 new rental homes across B.C. to help make housing more affordable for low- and middle-income seniors and families.

The government said it will invest close to $1.9 billion over the next 10 years into the new Building BC Community Housing Fund to build affordable rental housing.  Each housing project built through the Fund will consist of rental units for a mix of incomes. Thirty percent of the units will be for households with moderate incomes, defined as household incomes up to $71,200 for homes with fewer than two bedrooms, or up to $104,000 for homes with two or more bedrooms.

Half of the units will be for low- to moderate-income households, defined as households whose incomes are below the Housing Income Limits. Those limits range from $21,000 to $95,000, depending on the community and the unit size. Rents for these units will be targeted at the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation’s definition of affordability, which is at or below 30 percent of household income.

The final 20 percent of units will be for households with low incomes, such as those receiving income assistance. These are incomes below $15,000 to $30,000, depending on unit size.

“We’re building British Columbia by investing in homes for people who live and work in our communities,” said Premier Horgan. “Fixing the housing crisis is not just about ownership. It’s about making sure that British Columbians who rent rather than own can find homes they can afford and have a future in.”

BC Housing is issuing requests for proposals to identify prospective partners, including non-profit societies, housing co-operatives and municipalities, which want to develop and operate the mixed-income rental housing projects. 

The government said the projects will be prioritized based on a number of criteria, including targeted clients and the impact the project would have in reducing the community’s affordable rental housing need.

“People are struggling in the midst of this housing crisis. We need to do everything we can to make housing more affordable,” said Selina Robinson, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing. “Through the Community Housing Fund, people who have been squeezed out of the tight rental market will be able to find a place to call their own, so they can stay in their community.”

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