End of federal mortgage subsidies could trigger loss of 1000s of affordable city homes in co-ops, non-profits

The end of the existing federal mortage subsidy program in 2020 could trigger the loss of thousands of affordable housing units in the City of Vancouver, according to the Co-op Housing Federation.

Replacing that mortgage subsidy is one of the many goals of the city’s new Housing and Homeless Action Plan, which council approved today after hearing from a long list of housing advocates.

(A comprehensive library of documents on this groundbreaking plan can be found here.)

CHF president Thom Armstrong told council that the end of the federal subsidy  underlines the importance of protecting existing affordable housing units, not just seeking to build more.

Vancouver benefits from 5,600 co-op housing units, Armstrong said, of which 40 to 50 percent are on a subsidy that gears rent to income. That benefit flows from subsidized CMHC mortages that run out in 2020.

The same blow will fall on thousands more of units in other housing complexes owned by non-profit housing societies.