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Market Rental Housing


Mid-Market Rental

Below market rental units required in all new market rental developments seeking density bonus.

Short Term Rentals | AirBnB / Similar Services

The intent of this bulletin is to clarify the City’s current Zoning
regulations relating to short term rentals, including the use of AirBnB
and similar services. Read Bulletin



For many decades, the number of renter households in the City outnumbered ownership households. The growth of strata ownership changed this trend, but the 2011 National Housing Survey showed that the number of renter households is back on the rise, accounting for approximately 46 percent of all households in the City. With almost half of City households being renters, a diverse rental stock ensures rental options are available and appropriate to all renters in the City.


Purpose-Built Rental

The majority of the City's market rental units can be found in purpose-built rental buildings. Most of this stock was constructed between the 1950s and 1960s, when senior government programs facilitated rental housing development. Today, these units continue to be the primary source of rental housing in the City, and offer some of the most affordable market rents. However, with many of these buildings now well over 50 years of age, the maintenance, retention, and continual replacement of these units will be critical to the City's supply of rental housing for the foreseeable future.

The City is seeing new purpose-built rental stock construction after decades of limited investment and growth. The renewed interest in rental housing is due to changing market conditions, low interest rates, changing lifestyle preferences, as well as City strategies and incentives for rental construction. There remains no federal assistance for rental housing, however, and rental housing remains less profitable than developing strata condominiums. To create incentives for rental, the City provides the following:

  • Density bonus for 100% secured rental housing projects (Mid-Market Rental Units required)
  • No Community Benefits Contribution for 100% secured rental housing projects
  • Reduced parking requirements at 0.75 stalls per unit

While the City has seen an increase in new rental units in recent years, the City continues to have one of the lowest vacancy rates in Metro Vancouver at 0.3 percent in 2016 (a healthy vacancy rate is between 3 and 4 percent). To protect the existing purpose-built rental stock, the City has implemented strata conversion controls to prevent the conversion of rental units to ownership units unless the vacancy rate in the City exceeds 4 percent. The City also permits new rental units to be added to existing purpose-built rental buildings. To further protect tenants, City Council adopted a Residential Tenant Displacement Policy in 2015 to require enhanced notice and financial assistance for renters who are displaced due to redevelopment of older purpose-built rental buildings.


Secondary Rental Market

The growth in rental units in the secondary rental market has helped to diversify the City's market rental stock. The secondary rental market consists of secondary suites in single family homes, coach houses, accessory dwelling units in duplexes, lock-off units, condominium apartments, and other dwelling types rented out by owner/investors. While more City residents are now renting from the secondary rental market, these types of units are not secure rental housing resources and may be lost at any time.


Residential Tenant Displacement Policy

Council unanimously adopted a new Residential Tenant Displacement Policy on November 16, 2015 to provide enhanced notice and assistance for renters who are displaced through the redevelopment of purpose-built rental apartments. This policy is applicable to all development applications seeking Council approval to redevelop or demolish an existing purpose-built rental building on properties designated Level Four and higher in the Official Community Plan. The measures outlined in the policy represent a voluntary commitment by the development applicant to provide additional measures to support renters in the City of North Vancouver.


Mid-Market Rental Units

To facilitate affordability in new market rental developments, the Housing Action Plan requires the provision of ‘Mid-Market Rental Unit’ in all new market rental developments seeking a density bonus. Termed the City’s ’10-10-10’ policy, 10% of units in new market rental projects are required to be rented at 10% below average rents, as indicated by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, for a minimum period of 10 years.

Based on the 2017 average rents in the City, Mid-Market Rental Units are to be rented at the following rents:

Mid-Market Rental Units – Starting Rent if Occupied in 2017

Unit Size

2017 Average Rent

(as per CMHC)

Mid-Market Rent

(10% below Average Rent)

Recommended Annual Household Income Limit

Bachelor

$1,018

$916.20

$36,648

One-Bedroom

$1,220

$1,098.00

$43,920

Two-Bedroom

$1,584

$1,425.60

$57,024

Three Bedroom or Larger

$2,022

$1,819.80

$72,792


Mid-Market Rental Units are secured by Housing Agreement and administered by the rental building owner. As per the Residential Tenant Displacement Policy, displaced tenants should get first right of refusal in below-market rental units.


Know your rights, renters! Visit the Tenant Resource & Advisory Centre for information at tenants.bc.ca and read their Tenant Survival Guide.

Did you know? BC Housing currently offers rental assistance to working families with children and seniors? There are income requirements, so find out more on the program and how to apply at www.bchousing.org.

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