Earlier this week, I received my Notice of Assessment like every other property owner in Metro Vancouver. Over the past five years, the assessed value of my apartment has gone down. I posted my Assessment Notice online which prompted some of my friends to post their notices online as well.
A good number of people I know own apartments. What I saw from their notices was that the value of apartments has actually been relatively flat over the last little while which is a good thing for affordability. This is true whether you live in Abbotsford, Langley, or Vancouver.
One of the top of mind issues for people in Metro Vancouver is housing affordability. What I’ve noticed is that this conversation always seems to be about single-family housing. Over today and tomorrow, I will share some information from Metro Vancouver’s Housing Data Book.
Metro Vancouver is a desirable place to live for a variety of reasons, and the City of Vancouver is a top choice for many people to live within the region.
Being able to access the City of Vancouver comes at a premium. This part of Metro Vancouver is also pretty much built out. This means that for every new single-family house, row-house, or apartment built, something has to be demolished.
Building more single-family housing in Surrey or Langley won’t reduce pent-up demand for people wanting to live in a single-family house in Vancouver (foreign investors or not.) It’s really a simple supply and demand equation. There is way more people that want to live in the very limited supply of single-family housing than could ever be built.
The following tables show the total amount of housing demolitions and starts. Ground-oriented housing includes single-family houses, duplexes, and row-houses.
|Table of Apartment Demolitions in Metro Vancouver from 2004 - 2014. Select table to enlarge. Source: Metro Vancouver Housing Data Book|
|Table of Apartment Start in Metro Vancouver from 2005 - 2014. Select table to enlarge. Source: Metro Vancouver Housing Data Book|
|Table of Ground-Oriented Housing Demolitions in Metro Vancouver from 2004 - 2014. Select table to enlarge. Source: Metro Vancouver Housing Data Book|
|Table of Ground-Oriented Housing Starts in Metro Vancouver from 2005 - 2014. Select table to enlarge. Source: Metro Vancouver Housing Data Book|
When it comes to ground-oriented housing, there was an average net gain of 4,803 units per year regionally over the last five years. In the City of Vancouver, there was an average net gain of 288 units per year over the last five years.
Apartment units had an average net gain of 10,587 per year regionally over the last five years. In the City of Vancouver, there was an average net gain of 3,526 units per year over the last five years.
Affordable housing for people in Metro Vancouver requires that enough market-priced and subsidized row-houses and apartments are built to keep up with our growing population. The reality is that single-family housing will never be affordable in Metro Vancouver as long as the population is growing.