October 6, 2017 (Vancouver, BC)
New motion from Mayor Robertson prioritizes housing for people who live, work in Vancouver by giving local residents first shot at buying pre-sale homes
Mayor Gregor Robertson will be introducing a motion at the next City Council meeting for staff to bring forward a policy by the end of the year that prioritizes sales of new homes in multi-family developments to local residents as part of the City’s new 10-year housing strategy. ‘Local residents’ are people who live and work in Metro Vancouver; whose permanent address and place of work is in the region, irrespective of citizenship. “My priority as Mayor is to deliver new housing supply that is first and foremost for people who live and work in Vancouver, and this motion aims to give local residents the first opportunity to purchase a new home,” says Mayor Gregor Robertson. “In Vancouver’s red-hot housing market, local employers are crunched to retain talent, whether they’re doctors, tech workers, retailers, firefighters, teachers or nurses. I regularly hear stories about people who work in Vancouver, but are forced to move elsewhere in the region because they can’t find a place to live. At a time when we are seeing record levels of housing construction, local residents should be able to get the first shot at purchasing a home in new developments.” The Mayor’s motion will direct staff to bring forward a policy framework as part of the City’s Housing Vancouver strategy, which is coming back to Council at the end of November. An example of one such program is in West Vancouver, where in 2016 the City Council negotiated an agreement with Westbank development for a new condo project that prioritized local residents. Stipulations included:
- Requiring the project to be only marketed to West Vancouver residents during the first 30 days, and then the next 60 days to residents of Metro Vancouver;
- Requiring purchasers to sign a statutory declaration to demonstrate their intention to live in the building and not flip their unit;
- Restricting bulk purchases of units.