BURNABY, B.C. — Housing Minister Sean Fraser says the federal government should have never got out of the housing business even as high-income professionals are struggling to find affordable housing.
Fraser says federal governments over the past half century, both Liberal and Conservative, stepped away from the file and now much of the country is dealing with a housing crunch that has no easy fixes.
He told media in Vancouver that past federal governments were mostly preoccupied with providing subsidized housing to low-income people, but there’s been a fundamental shift as working professionals struggle to afford a home.
Fraser says it’s important for housing to be built for people across the income spectrum, and his government is looking at ways to speed up construction of housing through subsidies and other incentives.
The minister was unable to point to a specific price he would consider affordable rent for a one-bedroom apartment, while the average price for such a unit in Vancouver was recently reported to be $3,000.
Fraser says he believes bringing more rentals to the market will drive prices down but concedes Canadian home prices are subject to many market forces that make them difficult to predict.
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