Changing the Conversation Around Rental Living

Everyone deserves a home, and everyone deserves a great home.

This concept might have been taken for granted in the past, but at a time when housing shortages are prevalent in most metropolitan Canadian areas it warrants revisiting. The narrative surrounding renting versus homeownership has evolved beyond the traditionally held belief that owning a home is the ultimate goal. Embracing rental living as a long-term choice can provide a sense of stability, comfort, and community for individuals at every stage of life.

In recent years, the housing market in much of British Columbia has experienced a lack of available and suitable housing, a constant increase in home prices, and high interest rates. The idea that everyone has a right to a good home in the city of their choice, regardless of whether they rent or own, has gained traction. No longer is it recognized as a truth that renting is a temporary solution while saving up to buy. This change in mindset acknowledges the reality that many people are priced out of homeownership or no longer desire to be burdened by the long-term commitment of a mortgage. Renting long-term can now provide a sense of permanence and stability for those who may not be able to enter the housing market, or for those who choose not to. In many European countries, renting has long been the norm rather than the exception. Renting is considered a practical and sustainable choice, with people often choosing to rent through their entire lives.

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"Everyone deserves a home, and everyone deserves a great home"

The growing demand for living spaces in Canada highlights the need for developers and policymakers to prioritize the creation of affordable, high-quality rental homes – the kind that can be made a home for years or for decades. Regardless of age, income, or circumstances, individuals should have access to housing that meets their needs and holds a sense of belonging. We must move towards a landscape where it’s not necessary to leave urban centres for more affordable markets, in an exchange where residents lose quality of life and urban areas lose the vibrancy of culture. A lack of options has implications for individuals and cities alike, and it is critical to address this shortage to ensure that everyone has access to a home that feels good to return to. The need for this assurance is at the heart of our ‘why’ at Urban Flats, and why we develop urban rental communities that provide great options for Canadians.

As the housing market becomes increasingly challenging to navigate, Canadians are embracing rental living and evolving their perceptions to appreciate its many benefits. The development of rental communities serves the municipalities they stand in, creating solutions for all demographics. As the call to address this need is met, residents of Canada’s urban centres will gain access to the life they seek, in the cities they love.

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