Housing affordability continues to be a serious problem in Calgary because of the low vacancy rate, housing prices that rise faster than incomes, and the competing demands within family budgets between housing costs and the costs of transportation (Action Research on Transportation Housing Affordability, Keough, 2007).
Household incomes in Calgary have not risen as dramatically as housing prices. Over the past 10 years, housing prices have increased 156% yet incomes have increased only 34% during that same time.
The City of Calgary provides shelters, homes, incentives, assistance, and advice to help low to moderate income renters and owners and those who are at the greatest risk of losing their home through various programs such as:
- the 10 Year Plan Calgary’s to End Homelessness 2008 – 2018
- the delivering affordable housing units by the Affordable Housing division of the Office of Land Servicing & Housing
- Enterprise Housing Program which is an umbrella capital program and financial incentive encouraging the private and non-profit sectors to develop nonmarket and entry level market rental and home ownership in Calgary
- programs offered by the Calgary Housing Company and the non-profit Attainable Homes Calgary Corporation.
Among the different solutions being discussed:
- regulation around secondary suites to ensure safety and accessibility
- integration of public transit infrastructure and development planning to provide people with more affordable housing options.