OUR VIEW: Developer incentives could feed Surrey with much needed rental housing

According to a Metro Vancouver 2015 Housing and Transportation Cost Burden Study, 64,900 new rental units will be needed in decade

Surrey Board of Trade's idea to create developer incentives to encourage construction of rental housing stock is a good one.

Surrey Board of Trade's idea to create developer incentives to encourage construction of rental housing stock is a good one.

We support the Surrey Board of Trade’s call for government to create incentives to entice developers to build market rental housing for low-to-middle income earners here, as it is desperately needed.

SEE MORE: Surrey Board of Trade wants developer ‘incentives’ to build rental housing

According to a Metro Vancouver 2015 Housing and Transportation Cost Burden Study, 64,900 new rental units will be needed in the next 10 years.

The board’s CEO Anita Huberman notes there is a dearth of quality rental housing stock here and suggests that while experts are busy measuring the impact of the foreign entities transfer tax, funds from a housing priority initiatives special account should be used as a “carrot” to encourage developers to fill the gap — a gap that has become somewhat of a canyon. (See story page 13).

It’s an opportunity waiting for innovative developers with the right financial incentive, Huberman notes. Let’s hope the government heeds the board’s advice, developers bite and more people find affordable homes to rent as a result.

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