Lack of housing in Metro Vancouver makes us all poorer.
Prices reflect scarcity. When we don't have enough housing, rents are high.
First-time homebuyers struggle to save a down payment and then pay the mortgage.
Even if you're a long-time homeowner, you don't benefit from the inflated price of your home unless you sell, and then where are you supposed to live?
We have a mismatch between jobs and housing. People move where the jobs are. We're adding new jobs much faster than we're building new housing.
It's like musical chairs. Low vacancies drive up rents, pushing lower-income renters out of the city, or worse, into poverty and homelessness.
To fix this, we need to build more housing, and we need to build it faster.
If local governments can't figure out how to approve housing faster, the provincial government will need to step in.
For a more authoritative discussion, see the MacPhail Report on housing supply and affordability in BC.
The GTA and southern Ontario are facing similar problems. Mike Moffatt explains how a chronic shortage has been aggravated by the pandemic.