Jan. 25/23 as reported in Storey.com “With 96K Starts in 2022, Ontario Housing Minister Sees “Bright Spots” on Road to 1.5M Target.”
Let’s unpack this:
If we assume all housing starts were completed in 2022, that would add 96,080 units to the Ontario housing pool. According to Statista.com for the 12 months ending June 30/22 – 227,235 immigrants arrived in Ontario alone, the largest number to any province/territory in Canada. Using a conservative assumption that everything remained the same for the balance of 2022, and 2021 did not have any immigration housing need that carried over to 2022, and further using 3.5 as an immigrant average family size, those immigrants would occupy 64,924 housing units, leaving just 31,155 housing units to apply towards the Ontario housing need. This means coming into 2023, Ontario housing needs dropped to 1,468,844 housing units.
The tendency is that we keep moving the housing needs bar into the future. At the Spring 2022 ROMA Conference, Minister Clark announced that we needed a 10-year plan to address housing needs in Ontario. If we keep looking at addressing the crisis on a 10-year plan as mentioned above, we will never reach a solution. In 2022, the 10-year plan (ending 2032 – Plan A) required 577 new housing units to be completed every working day of the week (Mon. – Fri.) to reach the 10-year goal. If we are in Plan A, we now need 628 new housing units to be completed every working day for the remaining 9-years. If we have reset by creating Plan B, to have enough housing by 2033 (new 10-year window), we now only need 565 new housing units to be completed every working day of the week, for the next 10-years.
We need to do something differently.
Our research shows that 67% of the housing need is for singles, couples, and single-parent young families. This is the demographic that micro/tiny/small homes (which we refer to collectively as “tiny homes”) could address, which means that over 1M people in need could be housed in tiny homes. And what is the advantage of tiny homes over other forms of housing? Probably the key point is rapid housing. Tiny homes can be factory built, while tiny home community infrastructure is being installed. People can live in homes as fast as the homes are transported to the community and connected to utilities. If tiny homes are completed in 4-days, people can be living in them on the 5th. Let’s keep options open when we consider addressing housing needs.