New rental housing showing 37 percent cost advantage over condo purchase

A key statistic in Gregor Robertson’s release yesterday about the growth of rental housing construction in Vancouver was this one, according to Councillor Kerry Jang, himself a statistician: “According to CMHC, the rent for a one-bedroom purpose-built rental unit in Vancouver is 37% cheaper than renting a one-bedroom condo.”

Critics of Vancouver’s program often complain that the market units are not “affordable,” although few propose the city provide rent subsidies. Yesterday’s release provides the answer: these units are more affordable than home purchase to many families, letting them find new housing and opening up their units for others.

Under the Vancouver program, these units must remain rental for 60 years or the life of the building, whichever is longer.