Housing Crisis by the numbers
The housing crisis has gotten worse during the COVID period, but it has roots going back four or five years ago. What this chart shows is the population growth of HRM started to shift up rapidly in 2016, with the municipality growing 41,345 people, or 9.2%, in just the last five years. While new units (CMHC data on completes) have started to increase significantly, construction is not keeping pace with population growth.
Demand outpacing supply has meant vacancy has dropped to 1.0% in the year before COVID, while average rent has gone up by over 20%, and the number of chronically homeless has almost increased four times from the 2018 level.
By any measure, HRM has a rapidly deepening housing crisis. Shelter and housing resources have not kept pace with the need.
Halifax Area Affordable Housing Projects 2020 & 2021
Very little housing and shelter has been built in HRM since 1996. The Federal government has returned to the housing file with significant program funding, especially in the last year of COVID. In the last couple of years, we have finally started to see affordable housing and shelter units under construction.
The 184 units listed here are not enough. Specific types of housing, and specific and much needed programs for supportive housing with wrap-around services are not enough. HRM has provided land, waived fees, and in also run the Rapid Housing Initiative decision making process and administration locally.
There is a phase two of RHI being presented to Council next week, 40+ proposed units in the Bloomfield property, and two provincial plans for housing to address those currently living rough in parks that will be added to this listed when confirmed.
- Affordable Housing Commission Report (2021)
- Keys to a housing secure future for all Nova Scotians Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (2021) (summary document)
- HRM Affordable Housing home page
- HRM Affordable Housing Work Plan (2018)
- Housing and Homelessness Partnership Housing Needs Assessment (2015) (summary document)
- Affordable Housing Association of Nova Scotia
- ACORN Nova Scotia