Vancouver's empty homes tax revenue being used for more than 250 affordable homes
VANCOUVER -- Revenue from Vancouver's empty homes tax will soon be used to construct 269 units of affordable housing in the city.
The announcement came the day after council voted in favour of giving out more than $8 million in grants to four different organizations to build social housing.
Finnish Care Home, Lee's Senior Housing and the Salvation Army will all receive less than $1 million each, while the Aboriginal Land Trust and Lu’ma Aboriginal Housing Society will receive more than $6.2 million for its development.
The city says the funding comes from empty homes tax revenue, which was set up in 2017 to encourage home owners in the city to live in their house or rent it out.
"As well as returning more homes to the rental market, the empty homes tax is providing revenue to fund projects which will create new homes for our friends and neighbours, helping keep our communities strong and the people we love close by," said Mayor Kennedy Stewart in a news release.
"With these grants – the first from the new program funded by EHT – a proposed housing project is more likely to attract funding from other partners, including more senior levels of government."
More funding may be issued to social or co-op housing projects through city's $25-million Community Housing Incentive Program.