CANADA’S POPULATION CONUNDRUM
Recently, I watched an interesting podcast addressing Canada’s population surge and the challenges it places on our real estate industry. Immigration is important to our country to counteract our low birth rate and aging population and help to replenish our labour force. The conundrum is that we need more skilled workers to build homes, but as we welcome hundreds of thousands more immigrants each year, we need even more homes.
Many of the immigrants who land in Canada head for our cities. In the GTA alone, nearly four of every five residents is a first- or second-generation newcomer. In addition to the challenge of housing all of them, we need physical and social infrastructure, social services, and more to accommodate their needs. Immigrants come here for the high quality of life we offer. Certainly, with our three levels of government responsible for varying aspects of our lives, we must rely on more coordination to ensure that needs are being met.
In the interim, we may have to rely on alternative housing delivery models to satisfy the needs of renters and others who may not be able to afford market homes or condos. We also need more low-rise homes for seniors who want to age in place. The answer may be to bring in some public-private initiatives that have worked in the past. Whatever happens, owning real estate in Toronto and the Greater Toronto Area is a solid investment, whether you live in it or rent it out.