LandlordBC and our members recognize that there is a rental housing crisis not just in Vancouver but in many other communities across BC. This crisis is driven by a lack of rental housing options and it affects all of us. The situation is further exacerbated by the fact existing rental housing is old and reaching the end of its functional life. A lack of rental housing options impacts the mobility of our work force, hitting small businesses particularly hard, as well as our broader economy. It also forces families and individuals into sub-standard housing. We understand the frustration renters feel because our industry is frustrated as well.
Mayor Stewart’s leadership last night deserves to be acknowledged. His recognizing the need to secure the support of a majority of his Council colleagues, whom we also applaud, to hit “pause” and take the time to assess and understand the significantly negative and unintended consequences that even more restrictive rent controls (vacancy control) would represent for both renters and landlords alike, was critical. By the same token, we are deeply concerned that the motion seeking to implement prohibitive regulations that will compromise our industry’s ability to rehabilitate our aging rental buildings, will unfortunately mean a steady deterioration in the quality, safety, and energy efficiency of these homes.
In the final analysis, our position as an organization has not changed. We will continue to advocate for safe, secure, sustainable rental housing for all British Columbians. In the context of the City of Vancouver, we will continue to collaborate with the Mayor, his Council colleagues, and City staff to find solutions that appropriately protect tenants, maintain a viable rental housing sector, and encourage the building of badly needed new rental housing supply. We need to get to a balanced vacancy rate at the earliest possible date which will be a win for everyone in our community.