In 2010, Ontario released its very first Long-Term Affordable Housing Strategy. The goal of this strategy is that "every person has an affordable, suitable and adequate home to provide the foundation to secure employment, raise a family and build strong communities."
It is the firm belief of everyone involved that home-ownership is one of the building blocks of a stable and healthy society. The Government of Ontario has committed to funding this initiative with the ultimate goal being to end homelessness within a decade.
The Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing recently published an update to the Housing Strategy detailing how the funding over the next three years will continue to transform the housing industry. This funding will support four key areas:
- Survivors of Domestic Violence
- Supportive housing
- Community Homelessness Prevention Initiative
- Innovation, Evidence & Capacity Building Fund
However, one additional key area that received amended status in the Initiative, is that of Secondary Units or Second Suites. Second Units are those self-contained units within a residential unit, such as a basement apartment, a mother-in-law apartment, or other detached or semi-detached structures.
Secondary units, or second suites are widely recognized as one of the more affordable forms of rental housing. The government of Ontario has introduced legislation that would reduce the complexity and costs of developing second units by requiring municipalities to provide development charge exemptions for second units in new homes. This legislation would also seek to amend the Building Code standards to reduce unnecessary costs to building second units.
In years past, small landlords have faced unique challenges and concerns which have, in some cases, affected their ability to stay in the rental housing market. Ontario is responding to their concerns.
Here at Real Property Management, we believe this move to ease up on regulations in the second suite market is a positive one that supports the overall Long-term Affordable Housing strategy. If you are a landlord seeking to rent a second unit, give us a call, we can help you with the screening process of your potential tenants as well as other aspects of setting up your rental property.