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Chapter 1:
More Affordable Homes

Fairness for every generation means making housing affordable for every generation.

For generations, one of the foundational promises of Canada's middle class dream was that if you found a good job, worked hard, and saved money, you could afford a home. For today's young adults, this promise is under threat.

Rising rents are making it hard to find an affordable place to call home and rising home prices are keeping homes out of reach for many first-time buyers. The ability of an entire generation of Canadians to achieve the promise of Canada is at risk, despite their sheer grit and hard work. Millennials and Gen Z are watching the middle class dream become less and less achievable. They worry that they won't ever be able to afford the kinds of homes they grew up in. They deserve the same opportunity to own a place of their own as was enjoyed by generations before them.

The government is taking action to meet this moment, and build housing at a pace and scale not seen in generations. We did it when soldiers returned home from the Second World War, and we can build homes like that again. And we can make sure that Canadians at every age can find an affordable home.

On April 12, the government released an ambitious plan to build homes by the millions, Solving the Housing Crisis: Canada's Housing Plan. It includes our plan to make it easier to afford rent and buy a home, and makes sure that the most vulnerable Canadians have support, too. At the heart of our plan is a commitment that no hard-working Canadian should spend more than 30 per cent of their income on housing costs.

Tackling the housing crisis isn't just about fairness, it's also about building a strong economy. When people can afford housing, they can also invest in their local community, supporting local businesses and jobs. When workers can afford to live near their jobs, short commutes turn into high productivity. Businesses want to establish new headquarters in cities where workers can afford to live. When people can more easily save for a down payment, they can pursue their dreams, like starting a business. Housing policy is economic policy.

Budget 2024 and Canada's Housing Plan lay out the government's bold strategy to unlock 3.87 million new homes by 2031, which includes a minimum of 2 million net new homes on top of the 1.87 million homes expected to be built anyway by 2031. Of the 2 million net new homes, we estimate that the policy actions taken in Budget 2024, Canada's Housing Plan, and in fall 2023 would support a minimum of 1.2 million net new homes.

Given the significant provincial, territorial, and municipal levers that control and influence new housing construction, we call on every order of government to step up, take action, and achieve an additional 800,000 net new homes, at minimum, over this same period.

To get this done, the government will work with every order of government, with for profit and non-profit homebuilders, with Indigenous communities, and with every partner necessary to build the homes needed for Team Canada to restore fairness for every generation.

Working together, we will reach at least 3.87 million new homes by the end of 2031.

Chart 1.1
Federal Housing Investments Since the 2008 Global Financial Crisis
Chart 1.1: Federal Housing Investments Since the 2008 Global Financial Crisis

Note: Amounts for 2007-08 until 2022-23 are actuals, as available. Amount for 2023-24 is an estimate, and subject to change. Amounts are on a cash basis. Amounts include Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) programming only, and do not include: homelessness programming; energy efficiency programs delivered through Natural Resources Canada; tax measures; cost-matching provided by provinces and territories; or investments that support distinctions-based Indigenous housing strategies.

Text version
Federal Housing Investments 2,154.55 2,206.89 3,028.16 2,963.44 2,048.26 2,086.40 2,084.85 2,053.21 2,008.37 3,060.89 2,755.63 2,460.29 4,840.66 6,767.80 8,252.75 8,261.63 11,243.59
Average 2007-2015 2,328.22 2,328.22 2,328.22 2,328.22 2,328.22 2,328.22 2,328.22 2,328.22
Average 2015-2024   - 5505.89 5505.890019 5505.890019 5505.890019 5505.890019 5505.890019 5505.890019 5505.890019
Chart 1.2
New Housing Starts of Purpose-Built Rentals by Census Metropolitan Area, 2023
Chart 1.2: New Housing Starts of Purpose-Built Rentals by Census Metropolitan Area, 2023

Note: Last data point is end of 2023.

Source: Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation.

Text version
  New Housing Starts of Purpose-Built Rentals
Vancouver 10,768
Toronto 9,677
Montreal 9,635
Calgary 5,063
Edmonton 4,612
Ottawa 2,953
Managing Demand: A Sustainable Immigration Strategy

Immigrants built Canada. And when new Canadians arrive today, our society is enriched. Canada, like other advanced economies, needs immigrants today more than ever, given our aging population. Immigrants are essential to maintaining a young and capable workforce, to ensuring we can find the doctors, construction workers, nurses, and early childhood educators that we need.

But our ability to successfully welcome new Canadians depends on having the physical capacity to do so properly—in particular having enough homes. That is why current housing pressures mean that Canada is taking a careful look to make sure immigration does not outpace our ability to supply housing for all.

It is important to note that Canada's immigration system has two parts: permanent and temporary.

Throughout Canada's history, permanent immigration has become subject to extensive consultation with communities, provinces, territories, and employers. It is planned and designed in collaboration with Canadian society.

However, temporary immigration, which includes our student and temporary worker programs, has traditionally been demand-driven, determined by the requests from international students and workers, and from employers in Canada.

Canada has recently undertaken a review process for our temporary resident programs, to better align with labour market needs, to protect against abuses in the system, and to match our capacity to build new homes. We will also be setting targets both for the number of permanent residents we welcome, and for temporary residents.

Starting this fall, for the first time, we will expand the Immigration Levels Plan to include both temporary resident admissions and permanent resident admissions.

Our ultimate goal is to ensure a well-managed, responsive, and sustainable immigration system to help balance housing supply with housing demand. We also need to be sure that our temporary worker programs do not create a disincentive for businesses to invest in productivity, or drive down wages in Canada, especially for low-wage workers.

Solving the Housing Crisis

The federal government's plan starts with turbocharging the construction of new homes across the country because the best way to bring down home prices is to increase supply—and quickly. The government is already making the math work for homebuilders by breaking down regulatory and zoning barriers, providing direct low-cost financing, and making more land available. To ensure we have the workers and innovative construction methods needed to build more homes, faster, the government is training and recruiting the next generation of skilled trades workers, and transforming how homes are built to increase construction productivity.

Second, to make it easier to own or rent a home, Budget 2024 announces new action to support renters and lower the costs of homeownership. For renters, new action will help protect them from unfair practices like steep rent increases and renovictions, and unlock new pathways for them to become homeowners, including ensuring they get credit for rental payments. For first-time homebuyers, new support will make it easier to save for their down payment faster and get their first mortgage. And, existing homeowners with mortgages will benefit from new protections from rising payments through the strengthened Canadian Mortgage Charter.

Third, because everyone in Canada deserves a safe and affordable place to call home, this plan is unlocking more homes for Canadians in need. This includes building more affordable units for low- and middle-income Canadians by investing in affordable housing projects and partnering with non-profits, co-ops, the private sector, and other orders of government. This also means offering immediate support for Canadians without shelter and Canadians at risk of becoming homeless.

At the crux of this effort is ensuring that fiscal policy works in tandem with monetary policy, and that Canada's immigration policy works in tandem with housing policy. The government recently announced plans to adjust immigration programming which would lead to about 600,000 fewer temporary residents in Canada compared to current levels. These efforts are critical to creating the necessary conditions to lower interest rates, lower housing demand, and restore housing affordability.

1.1 Building More Homes

Building enough homes to restore fair prices and make sure everyone has a place to call home is going to take a Team Canada effort. All orders of government—federal, provincial, territorial, and municipal—need to work together to remove all barriers that often slow down the construction of new homes. This includes working together to overcome financial, zoning, and regulatory barriers.

Already, the $4 billion Housing Accelerator Fund is cutting red tape across the country, with 179 agreements with municipalities, provinces, and territories enabling the construction of over 750,000 new homes over the next decade. It is working, so we are topping it up with $400 million to build more homes, faster, in more communities.

Under a new Canada Builds approach, the federal government is offering to partner with provinces and territories that launch their own ambitious housing plans, with federal financing to help rapidly increase housing supply for Canadians in every province and territory.

We must use every possible tool to build homes at a scale and pace not seen since the Second World War. The federal government is announcing a range of new measures to make the math work for homebuilders, unlock the lands needed to build new homes, cut red tape that holds back new construction, attract and train skilled workers, and accelerate the implementation of innovative ways to build more homes, faster.

Chart 1.3
New Home Starts (6-month moving average)
Chart 1.3: New Home Starts (6-month moving average)

Note: Data are seasonally adjusted at an annualized rate. Last data point is February 2024.

Source: Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation.

Text version
  New Home Starts 2006-2014 Average 2015-2024 Average
Jan-2000 154,309    
Feb-2000 153,951    
Mar-2000 153,585    
Apr-2000 154,215    
May-2000 150,690    
Jun-2000 145,813    
Jul-2000 150,722    
Aug-2000 150,698    
Sep-2000 152,464    
Oct-2000 153,997    
Nov-2000 156,091    
Dec-2000 158,127    
Jan-2001 157,312    
Feb-2001 156,658    
Mar-2001 154,308    
Apr-2001 154,273    
May-2001 154,720    
Jun-2001 160,044    
Jul-2001 157,902    
Aug-2001 161,468    
Sep-2001 162,694    
Oct-2001 163,364    
Nov-2001 165,781    
Dec-2001 165,952    
Jan-2002 176,867    
Feb-2002 179,620    
Mar-2002 187,239    
Apr-2002 190,951    
May-2002 197,112    
Jun-2002 201,712    
Jul-2002 199,069    
Aug-2002 204,497    
Sep-2002 203,669    
Oct-2002 209,151    
Nov-2002 210,343    
Dec-2002 209,097    
Jan-2003 207,531    
Feb-2003 211,548    
Mar-2003 211,326    
Apr-2003 208,859    
May-2003 205,086    
Jun-2003 206,901    
Jul-2003 213,018    
Aug-2003 212,945    
Sep-2003 218,988    
Oct-2003 226,241    
Nov-2003 229,742    
Dec-2003 231,056    
Jan-2004 225,720    
Feb-2004 221,950    
Mar-2004 223,712    
Apr-2004 221,750    
May-2004 224,441    
Jun-2004 227,298    
Jul-2004 232,372    
Aug-2004 240,717    
Sep-2004 239,821    
Oct-2004 239,395    
Nov-2004 241,676    
Dec-2004 240,947    
Jan-2005 234,446    
Feb-2005 225,259    
Mar-2005 220,929    
Apr-2005 222,913    
May-2005 219,076    
Jun-2005 220,401    
Jul-2005 231,161    
Aug-2005 230,677    
Sep-2005 233,848    
Oct-2005 228,483    
Nov-2005 230,546    
Dec-2005 229,933    
Jan-2006 225,564 200,292  
Feb-2006 230,345 200,292  
Mar-2006 233,196 200,292  
Apr-2006 235,631 200,292  
May-2006 233,155 200,292  
Jun-2006 234,557 200,292  
Jul-2006 237,618 200,292  
Aug-2006 233,126 200,292  
Sep-2006 225,604 200,292  
Oct-2006 225,181 200,292  
Nov-2006 227,483 200,292  
Dec-2006 222,347 200,292  
Jan-2007 222,827 200,292  
Feb-2007 220,550 200,292  
Mar-2007 223,317 200,292  
Apr-2007 222,489 200,292  
May-2007 222,824 200,292  
Jun-2007 225,817 200,292  
Jul-2007 222,221 200,292  
Aug-2007 227,909 200,292  
Sep-2007 239,227 200,292  
Oct-2007 240,428 200,292  
Nov-2007 239,866 200,292  
Dec-2007 230,938 200,292  
Jan-2008 227,498 200,292  
Feb-2008 227,954 200,292  
Mar-2008 219,406 200,292  
Apr-2008 217,734 200,292  
May-2008 217,009 200,292  
Jun-2008 225,096 200,292  
Jul-2008 223,782 200,292  
Aug-2008 221,247 200,292  
Sep-2008 219,924 200,292  
Oct-2008 219,336 200,292  
Nov-2008 209,428 200,292  
Dec-2008 197,165 200,292  
Jan-2009 186,756 200,292  
Feb-2009 169,521 200,292  
Mar-2009 154,807 200,292  
Apr-2009 136,808 200,292  
May-2009 129,853 200,292  
Jun-2009 128,590 200,292  
Jul-2009 129,466 200,292  
Aug-2009 137,743 200,292  
Sep-2009 141,988 200,292  
Oct-2009 154,646 200,292  
Nov-2009 162,275 200,292  
Dec-2009 167,346 200,292  
Jan-2010 176,273 200,292  
Feb-2010 182,499 200,292  
Mar-2010 187,439 200,292  
Apr-2010 190,642 200,292  
May-2010 195,097 200,292  
Jun-2010 198,089 200,292  
Jul-2010 198,916 200,292  
Aug-2010 197,199 200,292  
Sep-2010 195,604 200,292  
Oct-2010 190,130 200,292  
Nov-2010 189,086 200,292  
Dec-2010 185,040 200,292  
Jan-2011 180,716 200,292  
Feb-2011 178,550 200,292  
Mar-2011 178,284 200,292  
Apr-2011 180,584 200,292  
May-2011 180,336 200,292  
Jun-2011 185,259 200,292  
Jul-2011 191,890 200,292  
Aug-2011 193,954 200,292  
Sep-2011 198,002 200,292  
Oct-2011 202,125 200,292  
Nov-2011 200,877 200,292  
Dec-2011 201,515 200,292  
Jan-2012 200,363 200,292  
Feb-2012 202,897 200,292  
Mar-2012 203,645 200,292  
Apr-2012 210,414 200,292  
May-2012 215,059 200,292  
Jun-2012 218,604 200,292  
Jul-2012 220,173 200,292  
Aug-2012 224,288 200,292  
Sep-2012 225,954 200,292  
Oct-2012 218,064 200,292  
Nov-2012 215,794 200,292  
Dec-2012 212,218 200,292  
Jan-2013 204,218 200,292  
Feb-2013 196,402 200,292  
Mar-2013 189,425 200,292  
Apr-2013 184,991 200,292  
May-2013 184,285 200,292  
Jun-2013 182,888 200,292  
Jul-2013 188,362 200,292  
Aug-2013 188,832 200,292  
Sep-2013 190,970 200,292  
Oct-2013 194,409 200,292  
Nov-2013 194,192 200,292  
Dec-2013 193,175 200,292  
Jan-2014 191,158 200,292  
Feb-2014 191,845 200,292  
Mar-2014 186,500 200,292  
Apr-2014 186,229 200,292  
May-2014 186,532 200,292  
Jun-2014 188,114 200,292  
Jul-2014 191,014 200,292  
Aug-2014 191,700 200,292  
Sep-2014 196,529 200,292  
Oct-2014 193,432 200,292  
Nov-2014 193,055 200,292  
Dec-2014 190,102 200,292  
Jan-2015 187,522   224,524
Feb-2015 179,410   224,524
Mar-2015 179,556   224,524
Apr-2015 179,902   224,524
May-2015 180,933   224,524
Jun-2015 185,028   224,524
Jul-2015 185,877   224,524
Aug-2015 197,426   224,524
Sep-2015 202,736   224,524
Oct-2015 205,073   224,524
Nov-2015 207,270   224,524
Dec-2015 202,167   224,524
Jan-2016 199,669   224,524
Feb-2016 199,158   224,524
Mar-2016 195,277   224,524
Apr-2016 194,491   224,524
May-2016 191,028   224,524
Jun-2016 198,832   224,524
Jul-2016 202,494   224,524
Aug-2016 198,194   224,524
Sep-2016 200,592   224,524
Oct-2016 201,100   224,524
Nov-2016 200,068   224,524
Dec-2016 197,505   224,524
Jan-2017 198,734   224,524
Feb-2017 202,243   224,524
Mar-2017 207,244   224,524
Apr-2017 210,358   224,524
May-2017 212,474   224,524
Jun-2017 213,544   224,524
Jul-2017 217,357   224,524
Aug-2017 220,455   224,524
Sep-2017 215,956   224,524
Oct-2017 217,233   224,524
Nov-2017 225,541   224,524
Dec-2017 226,408   224,524
Jan-2018 224,293   224,524
Feb-2018 224,653   224,524
Mar-2018 225,096   224,524
Apr-2018 223,669   224,524
May-2018 214,988   224,524
Jun-2018 219,587   224,524
Jul-2018 217,052   224,524
Aug-2018 211,666   224,524
Sep-2018 207,045   224,524
Oct-2018 207,338   224,524
Nov-2018 212,041   224,524
Dec-2018 207,556   224,524
Jan-2019 207,378   224,524
Feb-2019 201,700   224,524
Mar-2019 201,549   224,524
Apr-2019 204,167   224,524
May-2019 199,519   224,524
Jun-2019 204,125   224,524
Jul-2019 207,332   224,524
Aug-2019 217,750   224,524
Sep-2019 223,291   224,524
Oct-2019 219,181   224,524
Nov-2019 220,047   224,524
Dec-2019 212,868   224,524
Jan-2020 209,595   224,524
Feb-2020 206,934   224,524
Mar-2020 200,812   224,524
Apr-2020 193,520   224,524
May-2020 191,983   224,524
Jun-2020 194,252   224,524
Jul-2020 201,713   224,524
Aug-2020 210,720   224,524
Sep-2020 214,947   224,524
Oct-2020 226,028   224,524
Nov-2020 237,258   224,524
Dec-2020 241,801   224,524
Jan-2021 249,540   224,524
Feb-2021 249,089   224,524
Mar-2021 266,650   224,524
Apr-2021 274,126   224,524
May-2021 277,985   224,524
Jun-2021 285,210   224,524
Jul-2021 282,407   224,524
Aug-2021 282,192   224,524
Sep-2021 270,670   224,524
Oct-2021 264,711   224,524
Nov-2021 268,397   224,524
Dec-2021 262,298   224,524
Jan-2022 254,800   224,524
Feb-2022 252,255   224,524
Mar-2022 250,997   224,524
Apr-2022 255,415   224,524
May-2022 251,497   224,524
Jun-2022 255,885   224,524
Jul-2022 263,872   224,524
Aug-2022 267,542   224,524
Sep-2022 276,239   224,524
Oct-2022 276,216   224,524
Nov-2022 272,984   224,524
Dec-2022 269,196   224,524
Jan-2023 257,873   224,524
Feb-2023 253,604   224,524
Mar-2023 239,947   224,524
Apr-2023 239,662   224,524
May-2023 228,667   224,524
Jun-2023 233,714   224,524
Jul-2023 240,997   224,524
Aug-2023 242,087   224,524
Sep-2023 250,901   224,524
Oct-2023 252,684   224,524
Nov-2023 255,081   224,524
Dec-2023 249,636   224,524
Jan-2024 244,638   224,524
Feb-2024 245,665   224,524

Key Ongoing Actions

  • The Affordable Housing and Groceries Act, which is making it less expensive to build new homes by removing the GST on new purpose-built rental housing projects.
  • Over $40 billion through the Apartment Construction Loan Program, which is providing low-cost financing to build more than 101,000 new rental homes across Canada.
  • Over $14 billion through the Affordable Housing Fund to build 60,000 new affordable homes and repair 240,000 additional homes.
  • $4 billion through the Housing Accelerator Fund, which is incentivizing municipalities to make transformative changes by removing zoning barriers and ramping up housing construction. The Housing Accelerator Fund is already fast-tracking the construction of at least 100,000 homes over the next three years, and more than 750,000 homes across Canada over the next decade.
  • Unlocking $20 billion in new financing to build 30,000 more rental apartments per year by increasing the annual limit for Canada Mortgage Bonds from $40 billion to up to $60 billion.

Building Homes on Public Lands

The high cost and scarcity of land present key barriers that prevent key homes from being built. These barriers also contribute to higher costs of building, which are then passed on to Canadians.

Today, governments across Canada are sitting on surplus, underused, and vacant public lands, such as empty office towers or low-rise buildings that could be built on. By unlocking these lands for housing, governments can lower the costs of construction and build more homes, faster, at prices Canadians can afford.

Since 2016, Canada Lands Company has enabled the construction of more than 10,300 new homes on underused federal land, including more than 1,100 affordable homes. Over the next five years, Canada Lands Company currently aims to enable the construction of over 29,200 new homes, with a minimum of 20 per cent affordable units. Canada Lands Company is working to unlock new homes each day, but we need to do more, faster.

To ensure every Canadian has a safe and affordable place to call home, the government will transform its approach to federally owned land and lead a national, Team Canada effort to unlock public lands for housing.

Whenever possible, public land should be used for homes. Moving forward, the federal government will partner with the housing sector to build homes on every possible site across the federal portfolio. By leveraging new approaches to building homes on public lands, such as leasing, the federal government will also be able to maintain the strengths of its balance sheet.

By building homes on public lands,the federal government will lead a Team Canada effort to unlock federal, provincial, territorial, and municipal public lands across the country. The federal government will partner with homebuilders and housing providers to build homes on every possible site across the public portfolio.

With the new Public Lands for Homes Plan, the federal government is announcing an historic shift in its approach to unlock 250,000 new homes by 2031.

To get this done, Budget 2024 announces:

  • The federal government will use all tools available to convert public lands to housing, including leasing, acquiring other public lands for housing, and retaining ownership, whenever possible. Keeping land under public ownership and leasing it to builders—instead of selling to the highest bidder—will enable new homes to be affordable, forever. This effort will help housing providers avoid unnecessary upfront capital costs, allowing them to build more affordable housing, all while strengthening the federal government's balance sheet to unlock more homes.
  • The federal government is conducting a rapid review of its entire federal lands portfolio to identify more land for housing. As part of this effort, the government will:
    • Review the entire portfolio of federally owned land and properties to rapidly identify sites where new homes can be built;
    • Require departments and agencies to offer up specific parcels of land according to specified targets;
    • Consult with municipal, provincial, and private sector partners to identify the most promising lands to be made available for housing;
    • Publish a new Public Land Bank, encompassing an inventory of available lands, before fall 2024 to accelerate construction on public lands;
    • Release a new geo-spatial mapping tool to help homebuilders more easily access and navigate public lands; and,
    • Introduce legislation, as required, to facilitate the acquisition and use of public lands for homes, in partnership with other orders of government.
  • Budget 2024 proposes to provide $5 million over three years, starting in 2024-25, to support an overhaul of the Canada Lands Company to expand its activities to build more homes on public lands. These reforms will seek to:
    • Cut approval times in half, while abiding by constitutional obligations;
    • Initiate redevelopment processes early;
    • Bundle multiple properties to be transferred at once;
    • Provide leases, including long-term, low-cost leases, for housing providers;
    • Transform underused government offices into multi-use properties;
    • Transfer land from the federal government to Canada Lands Company for $1, whenever possible, to support more affordable housing;
    • Enable housing development on actively used federal properties; and,
    • Work with Crown corporations to redevelop their surplus, underutilized, or actively used properties for housing.
  • In addition to partnering with homebuilders, not-for-profits, and co-ops on federal sites, the federal government will partner with provinces, territories, and municipalities to unlock more public lands to build more homes. While the federal government owns a large portfolio of land, other orders of government can and should also contribute to this national effort by leveraging their own public land portfolios. Building on these sites can be done efficiently as existing infrastructure is already in place, such as transit, schools, roads, water, electricity, and parks. To support this effort and expand the federal government's land portfolio to build more homes, Budget 2024 proposes to provide:
    • $500 million over five years, starting in 2024-25, on a cash basis, to Public Services and Procurement Canada to launch a new Public Lands Acquisition Fund, which will purchase land from other orders of government to help spur sustainable, mixed-market housing.
    • $112.6 million over five years, starting in 2024-25, and $4.3 million in future years, for the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation to top up the Federal Lands Initiative to unlock more federal lands for affordable housing providers. This investment, which is expected to unlock a minimum of 1,500 homes, including 600 affordable homes, will also prioritize new approaches, such as leasing, to make federal lands available to affordable housing providers;
    • $20 million over five years, starting in 2024-25, for Public Services and Procurement Canada to scale-up its centre of expertise on public lands; and,
    • $15 million over five years, starting in 2024-25, for Public Services and Procurement Canada to work with Infrastructure Canada on delivering the new Public Land Bank and geo-spatial mapping tool.
  • To move forward immediately on its Public Lands for Homes Plan, the government is announcing today that it is urgently unlocking five federal properties that will be leased to housing providers to build over 800 new homes. These are: 
    • Nearly 100 homes at Currie in Calgary, Alberta;
    • Nearly 500 homes at Wateridge Village in Ottawa, Ontario;
    • Over 40 homes at the Village at Griesbach in Edmonton, Alberta;
    • 100 homes at Arbo Neighbourhood in Toronto, Ontario; and,
    • Over 100 homes at 3155 Chemin de la Côte-de-Liesse in Montréal, Quebec.
  • In addition, Budget 2024 proposes to provide $4 million over two years, starting in 2024-25, for Canada Lands Company to support new modular housing projects on four sites:
    • Shannon Park, Dartmouth, Nova Scotia;
    • Village at Griesbach, Edmonton, Alberta;
    • Downsview, Toronto, Ontario; and,
    • Wellington Basin, Montréal, Quebec.
  • The federal government will launch a new Public Lands Action Council this spring to spur collaboration and equip all players with the tools they need to build homes on public lands.
    • The Public Lands Action Council will bring all players together to identify specific parcels of land across Canada with high potential for housing and take concerted action to accelerate construction on these lands. This group will also help shape the federal government's approach to building homes on public lands, including the design of the Public Lands Acquisition Fund.
    • To support this work, Budget 2024 proposes to provide $1.8 million over two years, starting in 2024-25, for the Privy Council Office to create a Public Lands Action Council Secretariat.

The federal government recognizes that connecting existing federal financing to public lands can accelerate home construction and ensure deeper housing affordability. The federal government will explore leveraging its low-cost financing initiatives, including its new Canada Builds partnership and its new Canada Rental Protection Fund, to encourage housing providers to build more homes on public land.

Figure 1.1
The Federal Government is Canada's Largest Landowner
Figure 1.1: The Federal Government is Canada's Largest Landowner

Note: The federal government has a portfolio of over 11,700 Crown-owned properties in Canada. Data shown represent only a subset of this land (both surplus and in-use, with a focus on areas with a high number of properties owned).

Text version
Province City
Alberta Grande Prairie County No. 1
Alberta Oyen
Alberta Strathcona County
Alberta Two Hills
Alberta Coronation
Alberta Manning
Alberta Milk River
Alberta Fox Creek
Alberta Swan Hills
Alberta Cypress County
Alberta Opportunity No. 17
Alberta Lethbridge County
Alberta Leduc County
Alberta Wheatland County
Alberta Mackenzie County
Alberta Calgary
Alberta Edmonton
Alberta High Level
Alberta Wood Buffalo
British Columbia Prince George
British Columbia Thompson-Nicola B (Thompson Headwaters)
British Columbia Bulkley-Nechako A
British Columbia Victoria
British Columbia Invermere
British Columbia Ucluelet
British Columbia Fraser Lake
British Columbia Kamloops
British Columbia Lillooet
British Columbia Whistler
British Columbia Chilliwack
British Columbia Central Kootenay B
British Columbia New Hazelton
British Columbia Okanagan-Similkameen A
British Columbia East Kootenay A
British Columbia Northern Rockies
British Columbia Richmond
British Columbia Delta
British Columbia Surrey
British Columbia Tofino
British Columbia Stikine Region
British Columbia Cariboo A
British Columbia Mount Waddington A
British Columbia Prince Rupert
British Columbia Powell River
British Columbia Southern Gulf Islands
British Columbia North Coast A
British Columbia Vancouver
British Columbia Central Coast A
British Columbia Kitimat
British Columbia Nanaimo
British Columbia Strathcona A
British Columbia North Coast D
Manitoba Pembina
Manitoba Portage la Prairie
Manitoba Prairie View
Manitoba Rhineland
Manitoba Rockwood
Manitoba Selkirk
Manitoba Thompson
Manitoba Two Borders
Manitoba WestLake-Gladstone
Manitoba Coldwell
Manitoba Ste. Rose
Manitoba Brandon
Manitoba Grand Rapids
Manitoba Piney
Manitoba Emerson-Franklin
Manitoba West Interlake
Manitoba Division No. 18, Unorganized, East Part
Manitoba Yellowhead
Manitoba Harrison Park
Manitoba Kelsey
Manitoba Powerview-Pine Falls
Manitoba Division No. 21, Unorganized
Manitoba Gillam
Manitoba Mossey River
Manitoba Churchill
Manitoba Division No. 22, Unorganized
Manitoba Division No. 19, Unorganized
Manitoba Winnipeg
New Brunswick Southesk
New Brunswick St. Stephen
New Brunswick Grand Falls
New Brunswick Lamèque
New Brunswick Pennfield
New Brunswick Shediac
New Brunswick Hartland
New Brunswick Westmorland
New Brunswick Alma
New Brunswick Blackville
New Brunswick Fredericton
New Brunswick Musquash
New Brunswick Newcastle
New Brunswick Tracadie
New Brunswick Campobello Island
New Brunswick Bathurst
New Brunswick Wellington
New Brunswick Botsford
New Brunswick Alnwick
New Brunswick Miramichi
New Brunswick Moncton
New Brunswick Richibucto
New Brunswick Caraquet
New Brunswick West Isles
New Brunswick Grand Manan
New Brunswick Hardwicke
New Brunswick Saint John
New Brunswick Shippagan
Newfoundland and Labrador North West River
Newfoundland and Labrador Portugal Cove-St. Philip's
Newfoundland and Labrador St. Lawrence
Newfoundland and Labrador Baie Verte
Newfoundland and Labrador Stephenville
Newfoundland and Labrador Ferryland
Newfoundland and Labrador Woody Point, Bonne Bay
Newfoundland and Labrador St. Anthony
Newfoundland and Labrador Twillingate
Newfoundland and Labrador New-Wes-Valley
Newfoundland and Labrador Division No.  5, Subd. D
Newfoundland and Labrador Division No. 11, Subd. C
Newfoundland and Labrador Rocky Harbour
Newfoundland and Labrador Bonavista
Newfoundland and Labrador Placentia
Newfoundland and Labrador Fogo Island
Newfoundland and Labrador Channel-Port aux Basques
Newfoundland and Labrador Harbour Breton
Newfoundland and Labrador Division No.  4, Subd. A
Newfoundland and Labrador Division No. 10, Subd. D
Newfoundland and Labrador Happy Valley-Goose Bay
Newfoundland and Labrador St. John's
Newfoundland and Labrador Division No.  3, Subd. A
Newfoundland and Labrador Division No.  2, Subd. L
Newfoundland and Labrador Division No.  7, Subd. M
Newfoundland and Labrador Division No.  9, Subd. H
Newfoundland and Labrador Division No.  8, Subd. P
Newfoundland and Labrador Division No.  1, Subd. A
Northwest Territories Fort Providence
Northwest Territories Fort Resolution
Northwest Territories Paulatuk
Northwest Territories Tulita
Northwest Territories Wrigley
Northwest Territories Fort Good Hope
Northwest Territories Norman Wells
Northwest Territories Tuktoyaktuk
Northwest Territories Fort Smith
Northwest Territories Fort Simpson
Northwest Territories Hay River
Northwest Territories Yellowknife
Nova Scotia Pictou, Subd. A
Nova Scotia Shelburne
Nova Scotia Annapolis, Subd. A
Nova Scotia Kings, Subd. A
Nova Scotia Queens
Nova Scotia Argyle
Nova Scotia Cumberland, Subd. A
Nova Scotia Digby
Nova Scotia Barrington
Nova Scotia Lunenburg
Nova Scotia Richmond, Subd. C
Nova Scotia Inverness, Subd. A
Nova Scotia Victoria, Subd. A
Nova Scotia Guysborough
Nova Scotia Halifax
Nova Scotia Cape Breton
Nunavut Baker Lake
Nunavut Gjoa Haven
Nunavut Kugaaruk
Nunavut Kugluktuk
Nunavut Pond Inlet
Nunavut Taloyoak
Nunavut Rankin Inlet
Nunavut Pangnirtung
Nunavut Resolute
Nunavut Cambridge Bay
Nunavut Kivalliq, Unorganized
Nunavut Iqaluit
Nunavut Qikiqtaaluk, Unorganized
Nunavut Kitikmeot, Unorganized
Ontario Cornwall
Ontario Georgian Bay
Ontario Haldimand County
Ontario Loyalist
Ontario Mississauga
Ontario Northeastern Manitoulin and the Islands
Ontario Clarington
Ontario Quinte West
Ontario Sault Ste. Marie
Ontario Algoma, Unorganized, North Part
Ontario Amherstburg
Ontario Kawartha Lakes
Ontario Port Hope
Ontario Niagara-on-the-Lake
Ontario Deep River
Ontario London
Ontario Thunder Bay
Ontario Sioux Lookout
Ontario Windsor
Ontario Norfolk County
Ontario Chatham-Kent
Ontario Greater Sudbury
Ontario Prince Edward County
Ontario Hamilton
Ontario Kenora, Unorganized
Ontario Cochrane, Unorganized, North Part
Ontario Northern Bruce Peninsula
Ontario Leeds and the Thousand Islands
Ontario Thunder Bay, Unorganized
Ontario Point Edward
Ontario Toronto
Ontario Kingston
Ontario Ottawa
Prince Edward Island Borden-Carleton
Prince Edward Island New London
Prince Edward Island North Rustico
Prince Edward Island O'Leary
Prince Edward Island Summerside
Prince Edward Island Victoria
Prince Edward Island Alberton
Prince Edward Island Belfast
Prince Edward Island Souris
Prince Edward Island Wellington
Prince Edward Island Afton
Prince Edward Island St. Peters
Prince Edward Island Murray Harbour
Prince Edward Island Charlottetown
Prince Edward Island North Shore
Prince Edward Island Three Rivers
Prince Edward Island Stanley Bridge, Hope River, Bayview, Cavendish and North Rustico
Quebec L'Île-d'Anticosti
Quebec Port-Daniel--Gascons
Quebec Saint-François-de-l'Île-d'Orléans
Quebec Saint-Sulpice
Quebec Blanc-Sablon
Quebec Laval
Quebec Longueuil
Quebec Louiseville
Quebec Mirabel
Quebec Percé
Quebec Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu
Quebec Chandler
Quebec Rimouski
Quebec Rivière-Koksoak
Quebec Varennes
Quebec Bonne-Espérance
Quebec Sainte-Anne-de-Sorel
Quebec Contrecoeur
Quebec Côte-Nord-du-Golfe-du-Saint-Laurent
Quebec Sept-Îles
Quebec Lévis
Quebec Saint-Augustin
Quebec Saguenay
Quebec Trois-Rivières
Quebec Havre-Saint-Pierre
Quebec Les Îles-de-la-Madeleine
Quebec La Pêche
Quebec Gaspé
Quebec Pontiac
Quebec Montréal
Quebec Québec
Quebec Chelsea
Quebec Gatineau
Saskatchewan Hudson Bay
Saskatchewan Leader
Saskatchewan Prince Albert
Saskatchewan Sherwood No. 159
Saskatchewan Turtleford
Saskatchewan Val Marie
Saskatchewan Beauval
Saskatchewan Big River
Saskatchewan Big Stick No. 141
Saskatchewan Kyle
Saskatchewan La Ronge
Saskatchewan Loon Lake
Saskatchewan Rose Valley
Saskatchewan Canora
Saskatchewan Cut Knife
Saskatchewan Maple Creek No. 111
Saskatchewan Pierceland
Saskatchewan Ponteix
Saskatchewan Carrot River
Saskatchewan Buffalo Narrows
Saskatchewan La Loche
Saskatchewan Kamsack
Saskatchewan Reno No. 51
Saskatchewan Val Marie No. 17
Saskatchewan Punnichy
Saskatchewan Saskatoon
Saskatchewan Regina
Saskatchewan Division No. 18, Unorganized
Yukon Faro
Yukon Carcross
Yukon Upper Liard
Yukon Beaver Creek
Yukon Watson Lake
Yukon Haines Junction
Yukon Haines Junction
Yukon Whitehorse
Yukon Ross River
Yukon Dawson
Yukon Yukon, Unorganized

Building homes on public lands will enable new non-profit housing

Housing Society Co. is a non-profit housing provider and homebuilder that wants to build an apartment building of 125 homes in Edmonton, with at least 30 per cent of its units to be affordable. However, the property Housing Society Co. wants to purchase costs $9 million—representing 25 per cent of total development costs.

Between the land, construction costs, and interest rates, the math just doesn't work to make the project viable. By building homes on public lands, Housing Society Co. will now be able to lease a parcel of land from the federal government at little to no cost upfront and can use rent proceeds to repay the lease over time.

As a result, Housing Society Co. will be able to go forward with the project, and charge affordable rents on a higher percentage of units than initially anticipated.

Building Homes on Canada Post Properties

Canada Post manages a large portfolio of land, including more than 1,700 post offices, in over 1,700 communities across the country. Many of these sites often house one-storey Canada Post buildings, which could be leveraged to build new homes across the country, while maintaining Canada Post services.

The following six Canada Post properties are being assessed for housing development potential:

  • 1285 rue Notre-Dame Centre, Trois-Rivières, Quebec;
  • 37 rue Saint-Laurent, Beauharnois, Quebec (recently listed for sale);
  • 4 rue du Centre Commercial, Roxboro, Quebec;
  • 9702 Hardin Street, Fort McMurray, Alberta (recently listed for sale);
  • 120 Charles Street, North Vancouver, British Columbia; and,
  • 45 Mary Street, Port Moody, British Columbia.

These six properties are just the start. Across Canada Post's portfolio, many more properties could be unlocked for housing, while maintaining high service standards for Canadians, including in rural communities.

  • Budget 2024 announces that Canada Post will continue to be a "service first" organization focused on delivering the mail. Additionally, the government will now consider leveraging Canada Post's portfolio of federal properties to contribute to housing supply. This strengthens the expectation that Canada Post embraces innovation to meet the needs of Canadians and their communities.
  • As part of its work to build homes on public lands, Budget 2024 announces that the government will take steps to enable Canada Post to prioritize leasing or divestment of post office properties and lands with high potential for housing, where doing so maintains high service standards for Canadians.
  • Budget 2024 also announces the government's intention to launch a new Canada Post Housing Program to support affordable housing providers to build on disposed or leased Canada Post properties. Details will be available later this year.
Figure 1.2
Sample Canada Post Properties That Could be Unlocked for Housing
Figure 1.2: Sample Canada Post Properties That Could be Unlocked for Housing

Note: In the work to leverage Canada Post's properties for housing, Canada Post will maintain high service standards for Canadians.

Text version

Prairie Provinces:

  • Airdrie, Alta.
  • Carstairs, Alta.
  • Crossfield, Alta.
  • Didsbury, Alta.
  • Beausejour, Man.
  • Battleford, Sask.  

Atlantic Provinces:

  • Pointe-Du-Chêne, N.B
  • Saint Jacques, N.B.
  • Conception Bay South, N.L.
  • Eastern Passage, N.S.
  • Trenton, N.S.

British Columbia:

  • Chemainus
  • Gibsons
  • Langley
  • Qualicum Beach
  • Sechelt
  • Saanichton


  • Binbrook
  • Brooklin
  • Caledon
  • Erin
  • King City
  • Manotick
  • Maple
  • Rockland
  • Rockwood


  • Beauharnois
  • Boischatel
  • Hudson
  • Lévis
  • Mirabel
  • Rigaud
  • Saint- Sauveur

Building Homes on National Defence Lands

National Defence owns 622 properties across every province and territory, totaling 2.2 million hectares, in addition to providing housing to many members of the Canadian Armed Forces. Many of these National Defence properties in cities and communities across Canada are not fully utilized and could be unlocked to build more homes for Canadian Armed Forces members, and civilians, to live in.

  • As part of its work to build homes on public lands, Budget 2024 announces that the government is exploring the redevelopment of National Defence properties in Halifax, Toronto, and Victoria that could be suitable for both military and civilian uses.
  • Budget 2024 also announces that the Department of National Defence is working with Canada Lands Company and other partners to divest 14 surplus properties that have potential for housing, and are not needed for National Defence operations. These properties include:
    • The Amherst Armoury in Amherst, Nova Scotia;
    • 96 D'Auteuil and 87 St-Louis in Québec City, Quebec;
    • The National Defence Medical Centre in Ottawa, Ontario;
    • The HMCS Armoury in Windsor, Ontario; and,
    • The Brigadier Murphy Armoury in Vernon, British Columbia.

The review of federally owned lands and properties announced as part of the government's work to build homes on public lands is also expected to identify additional National Defence properties with a high potential for housing development.

Those who serve in the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) stand ready to deploy and relocate in order to defend Canada. Wherever they are posted, service members and their families shouldn't have to worry about finding a suitable home.

Budget 2024 also proposes additional investments for the Department of National Defence to build and renovate housing for CAF personnel on bases across Canada. This would support the construction of up to 1,400 new homes and the renovation of an additional 2,500 existing units for CAF members on base in communities such as Esquimalt, Edmonton, Borden, Trenton, Kingston, Petawawa, Ottawa, Valcartier, and Gagetown. See Chapter 7 for additional details.

Building more on-base housing will not only help meet the housing needs of military personnel but also help address housing demand in surrounding communities, since fewer military personnel will require rentals in these areas.

Converting Underused Federal Offices Into Homes

Sparked by the pandemic, like many organizations in Canada and around the world, the federal government shifted to hybrid work. Today, Public Services and Procurement Canada has over 6 million square metres of office space, of which an estimated 50 per cent is underused or entirely vacant. This is not an effective use of resources, particularly at a time when Canada is facing a shortage of homes.

The federal government is moving forward with a significant disposal effort to reduce its office footprint. This would enable more office buildings, particularly in urban areas, to be converted into homes for Canadians, while also ensuring the responsible use of government resources.

  • Budget 2024 proposes to provide $1.1 billion over ten years, starting in 2024-25, to Public Services and Procurement Canada to reduce its office portfolio by 50 per cent. This funding, which is expected to be fully recovered through substantial short- and long-term cost savings, will help to accelerate the ending of leases and disposal of underused federal properties, and address deferred maintenance. Where applicable, the government will prioritize student and non-market housing in the unlocking of federal office properties.

Reducing the federal office footprint will generate substantial savings, expected to reach $3.9 billion over the next ten years, and $0.9 billion per year ongoing.

Taxing Vacant Lands to Incentivize Construction

At a time when we need to build as quickly as possible, it makes no sense that good land, in good areas, is sitting there, underused. As all orders of government put in place policies to tackle housing supply shortages, there is a concern that some landowners in Canada may be sitting on developable land, hoping to profit from rising land values when the land could instead be used for immediate residential development. Vacant land needs to be used, and it is best used to build homes.

The government is taking significant action to resolve Canada's housing crisis, and the federal government believes owners of vacant land in Canada must also do their part to unlock unused land for homes.

  • Budget 2024 announces that the government will consider introducing a new tax on residentially zoned vacant land. The government will launch consultations later this year.

Building Apartments, Bringing Rents Down

Building rental homes requires significant investment, even more so when interest rates and land prices are high, as in recent years. Access to low-cost financing can help homebuilders move a rental project from being financially unfeasible to feasible. To help more apartment buildings break ground, the government is investing heavily in its low-cost construction financing programs, ensuring homebuilders have the financing needed to keep building.

The Apartment Construction Loan Program plays a crucial role in filling Canada's housing supply shortage by providing developers with the necessary capital to build rental homes. This support accelerates the development of apartments in neighbourhoods where people want to live and work. This is good for people, good for communities, and good for our economy.

  • To build more rental apartments, faster, Budget 2024 announces an additional $15 billion in new loan funding, starting in 2025-26, for the Apartment Construction Loan Program, bringing the program's total to over $55 billion. This investment will help build more than 30,000 additional new homes across Canada, bringing the program's total contribution to over 131,000 new homes supported by 2031-32.
    • Of this amount, at least $100 million will be used to build homes above existing shops and businesses, especially in big cities where land is scarce and where density is key.
  • To increase access to the program and make it easier for builders to build, Budget 2024 announces new reforms to the Apartment Construction Loan Program. These reforms include:
    • Extending the terms of the loans offered;
    • Extending access to financing to include housing projects for students and seniors;
    • Introducing a portfolio approach so builders can move forward on multiple projects at once;
    • Providing additional flexibility on affordability, energy efficiency, and accessibility requirements; and,
    • Launching a new frequent builder stream to fast-track the application process for proven home builders.

These measures will make it easier, cheaper, and faster to build homes in Canada. For students, it will mean getting the keys to their first home and living close to campus. For young families, it will mean getting a good home near work, opportunity, and in a vibrant neighbourhood. And for seniors, it will mean an affordable place where you can downsize with security and dignity.

Federal financing is complemented by the government's community-building funding, from more early learning and child care spaces to housing-enabling infrastructure funding. This is how we build more affordable, liveable communities.

Figure 1.3
Homes Supported through the Apartment Construction Loan Program
Figure 1.3: Homes Supported through the Apartment Construction Loan Program

Note: Data as of December 31, 2023. Includes all announced projects. Totals may differ from CMHC's reporting, which includes all approved projects.

Text version
Province Homes Supported
AB 1,213
BC 11,450
MB 822
NB 208
NS 1,303
ON 13,250
PEI 350
QC 5,347
YK 87

Lowering costs to build more apartment buildings

Camille Homes Corp. is interested in building a 20-story rental building in Winnipeg, which is expected to cost tens of millions of dollars. Loans for such developments are typically not available through private lenders, unless syndicated through several lenders to diffuse risk, a process which adds significant complexity and time. Private financing, with a prime rate above 7 per cent, is just too costly to make this project viable. Camille Homes Corp. is considering abandoning this project, but instead decides to apply for low-cost financing from the Apartment Construction Loan Program.

The Apartment Construction Loan Program's favourable financing terms, which include competitive interest rates, insurance premiums covered by the program, and longer terms and amortization periods are reducing borrowers' building costs by millions of dollars when compared to private financing.

Low-cost financing and flexible terms, combined with tailored support to meet the project's needs, as well as CMHC's ability to act as a single lender, is making the math on rental buildings work for builders such as Camille Homes Corp. and helping to build more homes across Canada.

Launching Canada Builds

To build homes across the country, we need a Team Canada approach. Provinces and territories control a number of critical levers to unlocking more housing supply, such as zoning rules, development approvals, lands and land use planning, rules for tenants and landlords and the adoption of building codes and regulations.

The federal government is supporting a number of provincial and territorial-led initiatives through cost-shared bilateral housing agreements. Most recently, this includes partnering with British Columbia in support of the BC Builds initiative with $2 billion in low-cost financing through the Apartment Construction Loan Program.

The federal government's partnership with BC Builds is a testament to the progress possible when multiple orders of government work collaboratively to deliver thousands of new rental homes for people in communities across Canada.

  • Building on this momentum, Budget 2024 announces Canada Builds, the federal government's intention to leverage its $55 billion Apartment Construction Loan Program to partner with provinces and territories to build more rental housing across the country.
  • To access federal financing, provinces and territories will be expected to meet the benchmarks set by BC Builds and deliver action to unlock even more homes. These actions include:
    • Complementing federal funds with provincial or territorial investments;
    • Building on government, non-profit, community-owned, and vacant lands;
    • Considering access to early learning and child care, and the expansion of non-profit child care, in the development process;
    • Streamlining the process to cut development approval timelines to no longer than 12 to 18 months; and,
    • Meeting the criteria of the Apartment Construction Loan Program, including affordability requirements.

The federal government will initiate discussions with provincial and territorial governments as soon as possible. This transformative approach links portfolios of underused land, homebuilders, and federal and provincial investments. This Team Canada mission will help pave the way for new housing supply across the country.

Topping-Up the Housing Accelerator Fund

In March 2023, the government launched the $4 billion Housing Accelerator Fund to work with municipalities to cut red tape and fast-track the creation of at least 100,000 new homes across Canada. Through 179 agreements signed to date, the government has committed nearly $4 billion to spur the construction of 750,000 new homes across the country over the next decade.

  • Building on this success, Budget 2024 proposes to provide an additional $400 million over four years, starting in 2024-25, to the Canada Housing and Mortgage Corporation, to top up the Housing Accelerator Fund. This will help fast track 12,000 new homes in the next three years.
Table 1.1
Housing Accelerator Agreements

Federal Funding New Homes Over 10 Years
London, Ontario $74 million 7,280
Vaughan, Ontario $59 million 43,999
Hamilton, Ontario $93.5 million 9,000
Halifax, Nova Scotia $79.3 million 8,866
Brampton, Ontario $114 million 24,100
Kelowna, British Columbia $31.5 million 20,680
Kitchener, Ontario $42.4 million 37,533
Province of Quebec $900 million --
Calgary, Alberta $228 million 35,950
Moncton, New Brunswick $15.5 million 5,585
Richmond Hill, Ontario $31 million 41,760
Vancouver, British Columbia $115 million 40,300
Mississauga, Ontario $113 million 35,215
Burnaby, British Columbia $43 million 11,950
Winnipeg, Manitoba $122 million 15,867
Toronto, Ontario $471 million 53,000
Iqaluit, Nunavut $8.9 million 1,450
Nunavut Municipalities/Hamlets $18.1 million 1,697
Summerside, Prince Edward Island $5.8 million 725
Surrey, British Columbia $95 million 16,500
Guelph, Ontario $21.4 million 9,450
Burlington, Ontario $21 million 5,335
St. Catharines, Ontario $25.7 million 12,417
Saint John, New Brunswick $9.1 million 1,710
Kingston, Ontario $27.6 million 4,867
Ajax, Ontario $22 million 10,713
Richmond, British Columbia $35.9 million 3,125
Milton, Ontario $22 million 4,619
Fredericton, New Brunswick $10 million 2,560
Whitby, Ontario $25 million 18,030
Squamish, British Columbia $7.0 million 1,350
Waterloo, Ontario $22 million 15,391
Regina, Saskatchewan $35 million 3,050
Coquitlam, British Columbia $25 million 2,867
Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island $10 million 1,050
Abbotsford, British Columbia $25.6 million 2,326
Ottawa, Ontario $176.3 million 32,600
Victoria, Comox, Campbell River, British Columbia $33.5 million 16,256
Channel – Port Aux Basques, Newfoundland and Labrador $3.3 million 390
Banff, Sylvan Lake, Bow Island, Westlock, Duchess, Smoky Lake, Alberta $13.8 million 3,118
Campbellton, New Brunswick $4.5 million 465
Marathon, Ontario $1.9 million 305
Edmonton, Alberta $175 million 22,300
Wolfville, Nova Scotia $1.8 million 280
Cape Breton Regional Municipality, Membertou First Nation, Nova Scotia $13.3 million 3,286
Woolwich, Ontario $6.7 million 1,648
New Glasgow, Pictou, Westville, Nova Scotia $5.6 million 2,160
Cornwall, Prince Edward Island $4.3 million 522
Mount Pearl, Newfoundland and Labrador $6.1 million 2,000
Saskatoon, Saskatchewan $41.3 million 25,240
Whitehorse, Yukon $11 million 3,984
Thunder Bay, Ontario $20.7 million 6,669
Shippagan, Caraquet, Tracadie, Bathurst (Pabineau), New Brunswick $10.5 million 3,196
City of North Vancouver, British Columbia $18.6 million 3,170
North Grenville, Ontario $5.2 million 1,700
Cap-Acadie, New Brunswick $2 million 360
Grand Bouctouche, Champdoré, Indian Island First Nation, New Brunswick $7.1 million 1,849
Tecumseh, Ontario $4.4 million 5,850
Airdrie, Alberta $24.8 million 3,534
Pemberton, British Columbia $2.7 million 1,995
Cambridge, Ontario $13.3 million 3,625
Kings County, Lunenburg, Chester, Nova Scotia $9.1 million 1,845
West Hants, Nova Scotia $1 million 1,500
Markham, Ontario $58.8 million 6,635
County of Antigonish, Town of Antigonish, Nova Scotia $3.2 million 276
St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador $10.4 million 4,138
Gibsons, British Columbia $2.1 million 900
Stratford, Prince Edward Island $5 million 2,017
Barrie, Ontario $25.6 million 4,100
Three Rivers, Prince Edward Island $3.4 million 410
Grand Bay – Westfield, Harvey, Sussex, New Brunswick $5.1 million 1,129
Bowen Island, British Columbia $1.6 million 114
O'Leary, Wellington, Prince Edward Island $1 million 154
Edmundston, New Brunswick $4 million 1,913
East Hants, Nova Scotia $5.8 million 2,825
Dawson, Carmacks, Haines Junction, Watson Lake, Yukon $6.7 million 1,036
Red Rock Indian Band, Whitesands, Wapekeka, Webequie, Wunnumin, Aroland, Long Lake #58, Muskrat Dam Lake, Shoal Lake No.40 First Nations, Ontario $15.3 million 1,460

* The agreement with the Province of Quebec includes matching investments by the province, for a combined total of $1.8 billion in new funding for housing construction, which includes support for an additional 8,000 affordable homes.

Figure 1.4
The Housing Accelerator Fund is Building More Homes Across Canada
Figure 1.4: The Housing Accelerator Fund is Building More Homes Across Canada

Enabling Communities to Build More Homes  

Building more homes in communities that people want to live in requires building more essential infrastructure, like power lines, transit stations, water and wastewater facilities, internet cables, libraries, and recreation centres. Without this infrastructure, communities have trouble growing, and new homes cannot get built.

The federal government is providing support to help growing communities build the infrastructure needed to build more homes, including through the Canada Infrastructure Bank. Budget 2024 also proposes new support for growing communities through a new Canada Housing Infrastructure Fund.

Further details on the federal government's infrastructure funding programs are outlined in Chapter 5.

A New Canada Housing Infrastructure Fund  

Building more homes requires putting in place the essential infrastructure to support growing communities and denser, more vibrant, and liveable neighbourhoods.

In particular, communities must invest in effective and reliable water, wastewater, and stormwater infrastructure in order to keep pace with growth and encourage densification. These investments are critical as all orders of government work together to unlock more housing, faster.

  • Budget 2024 proposes to provide $6 billion over 10 years, starting in 2024-25, to Infrastructure Canada to launch a new Canada Housing Infrastructure Fund. The Fund will accelerate the construction and upgrading of housing-enabling water, wastewater, stormwater, and solid waste infrastructure that will directly enable new housing supply and help improve densification. This Fund will be comprised of:
    • $1 billion available directly to municipalities to support urgent infrastructure needs that will directly enable housing supply.
    • $5 billion for agreements with provinces and territories to support long-term priorities. Provinces and territories can only access this funding if they commit to key actions that increase housing supply:
      • Legalize more housing options by adopting zoning that allows four units as-of-right and that permits more "missing middle" homes, including duplexes, triplexes, townhouses, and small multi-unit apartments;
      • Implement a three-year freeze on increasing development charges from April 2, 2024, levels for municipalities with a population greater than 300,000;
      • Adopt forthcoming changes to the National Building Code to support more accessible, affordable, and climate-friendly housing options;
      • Provide pre-approval for construction of designs included in the government's upcoming Housing Design Catalogue; and,
      • Implement measures from the forthcoming Home Buyers' Bill of Rights and Renters' Bill of Rights.
    • Provinces will have until January 1, 2025, to secure an agreement, and territories will have until April 1, 2025. If a province or territory does not secure an agreement by their respective deadlines, their funding allocation will be transferred to the municipal stream. The federal government will work with territorial governments to ensure the actions in their agreements are suitable to their distinct needs.

To ensure this funding reaches communities of all sizes and needs, provinces must dedicate at least 20 per cent of their agreement-based funding for northern, rural, and Indigenous communities.

Leveraging Transit Funding to Build More Homes

Many Canadians rely on public transit to go to school, to get to work, to see their friends, and to explore their communities. More homes need to be built closer to the services that Canadians count on. Transit that is more accessible and reliable means Canadians can spend more time with their friends and family. It's crucial that all orders of government work together to achieve this.

  • Budget 2024 announces that any community seeking to access long-term, predictable funding through the federal government's forthcoming permanent public transit fund will be required to take action that directly unlocks housing supply where it is needed most by:
    • Eliminating all mandatory minimum parking requirements within 800 metres of a high-frequency transit line;
    • Allowing high-density housing within 800 metres of a high-frequency transit line; and,
    • Allowing high-density housing within 800 metres of post-secondary institutions.
    • Completing a Housing Needs Assessment for all communities with a population greater than 30,000.

These are long overdue changes that will mean more people can live near transit to access the services and opportunities in their communities, and will allow home construction to happen faster and at more affordable prices.

The Canada Infrastructure Bank's Housing Initiative

As Canada's cities and towns build more homes, they need to build more infrastructure. From water and sewer infrastructure to public transit to high-speed internet, the federal government is providing municipalities with the tools they need to grow.

That is why, since 2017, the Canada Infrastructure Bank has made investment commitments of over $11 billion in more than 50 projects, and catalyzed over $31 billion in total investment, to address critical infrastructure gaps across the country. These include:

  • $1.28 billion for the Réseau express métropolitain in Montréal;
  • $1.3 billion for rural broadband internet in Ontario;
  • $165 million for the City of Calgary to buy zero-emission buses;
  • $138.2 million for energy storage to enable increased renewable electricity in Nova Scotia; and,
  • Up to $80 million for the Atlin Hydroelectric Expansion in Yukon.

The 2023 Fall Economic Statement announced that the Canada Infrastructure Bank would be exploring further opportunities to support the needs of growing communities by helping to finance the infrastructure needed to build more homes.

In March 2024, the Canada Infrastructure Bank announced the launch of its Infrastructure for Housing Initiative to provide low-cost financing to enable municipalities and Indigenous communities to build housing-enabling infrastructure. Funding for this initiative is sourced from the CIB's existing funding envelope.

Building the infrastructure communities need to build more homes

The Canada Infrastructure Bank (CIB) has already made its first investment commitment under its Infrastructure for Housing Initiative, committing up to $140 million in financing for new and enhanced water and wastewater infrastructure in five communities in Manitoba, including the City of Brandon. The project will support cleaner water and better wastewater treatment, which will provide the enabling infrastructure to support an estimated 15,000 new housing units.

Fast growing communities, like the City of Brandon, require not only significant new home construction but also investments in water and wastewater systems and other local infrastructure. Paying for this new infrastructure can be challenging, especially where the up-front costs would burden existing residents. By lowering the cost of borrowing and taking on some of the risk associated with new development, the CIB's investment can help municipalities build the infrastructure needed to support thousands of new homes across the country. 

Changing How We Build Homes

We have to build homes smarter, faster, and at prices Canadians can afford. That means investing in ideas and technology like prefabricated housing factories, mass timber production, panelization, 3D printing, and pre-approved housing design catalogues. We need to bring the same spirit of innovation that we are investing in across the economy, and build homes in a 21st century way.

  • To spur the development of innovative housing technologies, Budget 2024 proposes $50 million over two years, beginning in 2024-25, for Next Generation Manufacturing Canada (NGen)—one of Canada's Global Innovation Clusters—to launch a new Homebuilding Technology and Innovation Fund. NGen will seek to leverage an additional $150 million from the private sector, and other orders of government, to support a targeted $200 million investment in housing innovation in Canada. The first projects will aim to be announced this summer.
  • To scale-up more innovative housing solutions, Budget 2024 proposes $50 million over two years, beginning in 2024-25, on a cash basis, through Canada's Regional Development Agencies to support local innovative housing solutions across the country, such as designing and upscaling of modular homes, the use of 3D printing, mass timber construction, and panelized construction. This builds on the success of dozens of existing innovative projects already funded and underway in communities across the country, which includes:
    • Grand River Modular Ltd., in Kitchener, Ontario, to support commercialization efforts to bring modular housing units to market, supported with $188,485 from the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario;
    • Structures KSM in Gatineau, Quebec, to acquire innovative, automated production equipment and software to improve the production capacity of roof truss manufacturing, supported with $200,000 from Canada Economic Development for Quebec Regions;
    • Nunafab Corp., in Nunavut, to create a modular home production plant in the community of Cambridge Bay where homes can be rapidly built for local housing needs and shipped to other Nunavut communities, supported with $2.15 million from the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency;
    • Island Structural Systems, in Kensington, PEI, an automated facility that will improve the productivity of the PEI residential construction sector, supported with $2 million from the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency; and,
    • Landmark Group of Companies Inc. and Promise Robotics Inc. in Edmonton, Alberta, to establish a mobile, robotic micro-factory to construct housing components, supported with $1 million from Prairies Economic Development Canada.

Any new innovative housing designs funded through the Regional Development Agencies and NGen will feed into the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation's work on the Housing Design Catalogue.

  • To help simplify the way Canada builds homes, Budget 2024 announces that the National Research Council will launch consultations with provinces, territories, industry, and fire safety experts to address regulatory barriers, including point block access and single egress designs, and streamline the inspection process. In addition, the National Research Council will identify ways to reduce duplication between factory inspections of modular home components and on-site building inspections, and support efforts to address regulatory barriers to help scale up factory-built housing across the country.
  • Budget 2024 also announces that the Apartment Construction Loan Program will earmark at least $500 million to homebuilders that use innovative construction techniques, such as modular housing, for new rental projects.

In the coming months, the government will engage with housing, construction, and building material sectors, along with labour unions, Indigenous housing experts, and other relevant stakeholders, to co-develop a Canadian industrial strategy for homebuilding. Together, we will explore all essential inputs into building homes in Canada, including raw and manufactured materials, supply chains, and building techniques to ensure that all orders of government and industry can achieve our ultimate goal of building homes smarter, faster, and at prices Canadians can afford.

Innovative Residential Construction

Strengthening innovation and increasing productivity in the residential construction sector is critical to building more homes, faster. In addition to new measures in Budget 2024, the federal government is supporting homebuilders who use new, innovative ways to build more homes, faster.

Existing support to advance innovative construction includes:

  • Over $600 million through the Affordable Housing Innovation Fund to support innovative solutions for the next generation of housing in Canada.
  • $300 million through the Housing Supply Challenge to develop solutions to remove barriers that hinder housing supply.
  • $191.8 million over seven years and $7.1 million per year ongoing to conduct research and development on innovative construction materials and to revitalize national housing and building standards to encourage low-carbon construction solutions.
  • $38 million through the Green Construction through Wood program to encourage the use of innovative wood-based building technologies in construction projects.
  • $13.5 million per year to make the National Building Codes free to access and to modernize codes, including by reducing barriers to internal trade and aligning building codes across the country.

Further support available for housing and construction innovation and productivity includes:

  • The Industrial Research Assistance Program, which helps Canadian small- and medium-sized businesses increase their innovation capacity and take ideas to market.
  • The Regional Economic Growth through Innovation program, which helps businesses scale-up new innovative technologies. 
  • The Strategic Innovation Fund, which helps attract and spur private investment in innovative projects across all regions and sectors of the economy.

Housing Design Catalogue

The government is reviving and modernizing its post-war housing design catalogue, which will provide blueprints that can be used across the country to speed up the construction of new homes.

  • Budget 2024 proposes to provide $11.6 million in 2024-25 to support the development of its Housing Design Catalogue for up to 50 housing designs, such as modular housing, row housing, fourplexes, sixplexes, and accessory dwelling units, that provinces, territories, and municipalities could use to simplify and accelerate housing approvals and builds.

This first phase of the catalogue will be published in fall 2024.

Modernizing Housing Data

To better understand the needs of local housing markets, we need better data. Every order of government should be committed to a data-driven response to the housing crisis.

  • To help modernize housing data, Budget 2024 proposes to provide $20 million over four years, starting in 2024-25 for Statistics Canada and the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation to modernize and enhance the collection and dissemination of housing data, including municipal-level data on housing starts and completions.

Adding Additional Suites to Single Family Homes

Many homeowners have extra space they could convert into rental suites, such as an unused basement, or a garage that could be converted into a laneway home. Historically, the cost of renovating, combined with municipal red tape, has made this both difficult and costly.

Recent municipal zoning reforms in Canada's major cities, including reforms through Housing Accelerator Fund agreements, are creating new opportunities for homeowners to add additional suites to their properties in support of densification. New rental suites would provide more homes for Canadians and could provide an important source of income for seniors, who would be able to afford continuing to age at home. New suites can also be purpose-built to be barrier-free, to accommodate physical impairments of an aging family member or a child with a disability.

The government is taking action to make it easier for homeowners to increase Canada's supply of housing by adding additional suites to their home.

  • Budget 2024 proposes to provide $409.6 million over four years, starting in 2025-26, to the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation to launch a new Canada Secondary Suite Loan Program, enabling homeowners to access up to $40,000 in low-interest loans to add secondary suites to their homes. Details of this program will be announced in the coming months.
  • Budget 2024 announces the government's intention to make targeted changes to mortgage insurance rules to encourage densification and support the efficient functioning of the housing finance market, by enabling homeowners to add more units to their homes. The government will consult stakeholders on proposed changes to regulations, including for refinancing, maximum loan and home price, as well as other mortgage insurance rules where homeowners are adding additional units.

Low-cost loans to build more secondary suites

Amena and Kareem are young working professionals looking to purchase their first home in Burnaby, British Columbia. They find a single-family home with a separate garage out back. With a single car between them, they think about converting the garage into a laneway home to generate additional income to help pay down their mortgage.

In addition to new flexibilities in mortgage insurance rules to enable Amena and Kareem to access mortgage insurance, for a property value that exceeds the current limit of $1 million, the new secondary suite loan program will help them convert their garage into an adjacent laneway home after the home is purchased.

They apply to the Canada Secondary Suite Loan Program for a low-cost loan of $40,000, to help cover their renovation costs, and once they find a tenant, are able to use new rental income to cover the cost of the loan.

New mortgage flexibilities to add secondary suites

Yuval owns a single-family home in St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador. Despite having accumulated significant equity in his home, Yuval is feeling the strain of mortgage payments, property taxes and other expenses from higher living costs.

Targeted changes to mortgage insurance rules could allow Yuval to refinance his insured mortgage to access his home equity to convert part of his home into a rental suite. This could allow Yuval to earn rental income to offset his mortgage expenses and property taxes, while also providing a much-needed rental accommodation in his neighbourhood.

Accelerating Investment to Build More Apartments

Building on the success of removing 100 per cent of GST from new rental housing projects and providing more low-cost financing to move more apartment building projects forward, the government is taking further action to make the math work for homebuilders.

  • Budget 2024 proposes to introduce a temporary accelerated capital cost allowance, at a rate of 10 per cent for eligible new purpose-built rental projects that begin construction on or after Budget Day, and are available for residents to move in before January 1, 2036.

Increasing the capital cost allowance rate from 4 per cent to 10 per cent will incentivize builders by moving projects from unfeasible to feasible, through increased after-tax returns on investment.

The measure does not change the total amount of depreciation expenses being deducted over time, it simply accelerates it. Allowing homebuilders to deduct certain depreciation expenses over a shorter period of time allows homebuilders to recover more of their costs faster, enabling further investment of their money back into new housing projects.

This measure would cost an estimated $1.1 billion over five years, starting in 2024-25.

Building More Student Housing

As universities and colleges expand and attract more students, the demand for student housing is going up. Not every campus is equipped, and that means some students are struggling to afford local rents. And, student demand puts pressure on locals. Building more student housing is good for young people, and makes sure there is a fair rental market for everyone.

To encourage the construction of a wide variety of much needed long-term rental housing that meets the needs of Canadians, the federal government removed 100 per cent of GST from new rental housing built specifically for long-term rental accommodation. However, student residences, given their typically shorter-term and transient nature, may not currently meet the conditions for this rebate.

  • Budget 2024 announces that the eligibility conditions for the removal of GST on new student residences will be relaxed for not-for-profit universities, public colleges, and school authorities. This will incentivize Canada's educational institutions to build more student housing by ensuring they benefit from the removal of GST on new student residences. This measure is expected to cost $19 million over five years, starting in 2024-25, and $5 million per year ongoing.

The relaxed eligibility will apply to new student residences that begin construction on or after September 14, 2023, and before 2031, and that complete construction before 2036. Private institutions will not be eligible for this support.

This measure builds on the government's new reform to allow on- and off-campus student housing projects to access the $55 billion Apartment Construction Loan Program.

More Skilled Trades Workers Building Homes

People in the skilled trades are proudly stepping up as part of this generational effort to build housing. But to meet this challenge, Canada needs even more workers and it needs apprenticeships to remain affordable for young people starting their new careers. According to BuildForce Canada, the construction sector faces a shortage of over 60,000 workers by 2032, due to many hard-working construction workers reaching retirement age, combined with demand from accelerating home construction.

To encourage more people to pursue a career in the skilled trades, the federal government is creating apprenticeship opportunities to train and recruit the next generation of skilled trades workers.

  • Budget 2024 proposes to provide $100 million over two years, starting in 2024-25, to Employment and Social Development Canada for the following:
    • $90 million over two years, starting in 2024-25, for the Apprenticeship Service to help create placements with small and medium-sized enterprises for apprentices. Of this amount, $10 million in 2025-26 would be sourced from existing departmental resources.
    • $10 million over two years, starting in 2024-25, for the Skilled Trades Awareness and Readiness Program to encourage Canadians to explore and prepare for careers in the skilled trades. This funding would be sourced from existing departmental resources.

To make it easier for young people who hope to start a career in the skilled trades, in addition to interest-free Canada Apprentice Loan and Employment Insurance Regular Benefits for apprentices on full-time technical training, the government will continue explore options to make apprenticeships more affordable.

Further investments to build Canada's residential construction workforce, such as the recently launched Sustainable Jobs Training Fund, will help young workers gain the specialized skills needed to retrofit homes to increase energy efficiency and lower the costs of homeownership.

Training the next generation of construction workers

Emily is a high school student thinking of pursuing a career as a construction electrician. Through the Skilled Trades Awareness and Readiness Program, Emily can get access to career fairs, mentorship, and job shadowing to explore and prepare for a career in the construction industry.

Jai is a plumbing apprentice seeking to obtain Red Seal Certification. Jai can receive innovative, hands-on training designed to remove accessibility barriers at a small and medium-sized enterprise receiving support through the Apprenticeship Service to offer apprenticeship training opportunities. 

Recognizing Foreign Construction Credentials and Improving Labour Mobility

Newcomers with the skills and experience needed to build new homes should be able to join the Canadian labour market without delays.

To enable skilled newcomers to maximize their potential as they build a new life in Canada, the Foreign Credential Recognition Program helps provide training, work placements, wage subsidies, and mentoring to newcomers. For six years, the program has helped over 9,000 skilled newcomers receive work placements and wage subsidies, and another 20,000 workers received low-cost loans and support services to minimize the costs and requirements associated with practicing their trade in Canada.

Building on Budget 2022's five-year $115 million investment in the Foreign Credential Recognition Program:

  • Budget 2024 proposes to provide $50 million over two years, starting in 2024-25, to Employment and Social Development Canada for the Foreign Credential Recognition Program. At least half of this amount will be to streamline foreign credential recognition in the construction sector to help skilled trades workers build more homes, and the remaining funding will support foreign credential recognition in the health sector. Similar to a recent agreement between federal, provincial and territorial health ministers to recognize foreign credentials for health care professionals, the federal government is calling on provinces and territories to expedite removal of their barriers to foreign credential recognition.

To reduce internal barriers for skilled workers in Canada, the federal government is also calling for provinces and territories to urgently streamline their trades certification standards for interprovincial consistency. This includes streamlining requirements in trades, or sub-trades, that have no or limited equivalents in other jurisdictions. The federal government will continue to collaborate with provincial and territorial apprenticeship authorities to improve labour mobility for workers in these trades.

Ensuring newcomer construction workers can help build more homes

Emmanuel is a newcomer to Canada, with significant experience in the construction sector abroad. Through investments made by the Foreign Credential Recognition Program, Emmanuel can access construction-related training and work opportunities to help him get his education and experience recognized, integrate into the residential construction sector in his province, and contribute to alleviating the housing crisis.

1.2 Making it Easier to Own or Rent a Home

Homeownership is a big part of the middle class dream. If you work hard, and save your money, you should be able to buy a home. That was the deal for generations. But young adults feel like the possibility of owning a home like the one they grew up in is less and less likely, as increases in home prices continue to outpace their salaries and wages. The prospect of owning a home in Canada needs to be as real for young people today, as it was for any other generation.

And for the millions of Canadians who rent, including many who prefer the flexibility that comes with renting, drastic rent increases have pushed what was once an affordable option out of reach.

Canadians need help now, and Canada will work to make homeownership a reality for young Canadians and to protect renters, many of whom are Millennial and Gen Z, and are paying a much higher portion of their earnings towards rents than previous generations.

Budget 2024 takes action to unlock new pathways for young renters to become homeowners, and to protect middle class homeowners from rising mortgage payments.

Figure 1.5
Making it Easier to Buy a First Home
Figure 1.5: Making it Easier to Buy a First Home
Text version
  • Increasing the Home Buyers' Plan limit to $60,000, to  use RRSP savings for a first home
  • Saving up to $40,000 per person in  a Tax-Free First Home  Savings Account
  • Permit up to 30-year insured mortgages for first-time homebuyers purchasing new builds
  • Supporting the use of rental history for mortgage applications
  • $1,500 from the recently doubled  First-Time Home  Buyers' Tax Credit

Key Ongoing Actions

  • The Canadian Mortgage Charter, which details the tailored mortgage relief that the government expects banks to provide borrowers who are facing financial difficulty with the mortgage on their principal residence.
  • The new Tax-Free First Home Savings Account, which is a registered savings account that allows Canadians to contribute up to $8,000 per year (up to a lifetime limit of $40,000) for their first down payment.
  • The recently doubled First-Time Home Buyers' Tax Credit, which provides up to $1,500 in direct support to home buyers to offset expensive closing costs involved in buying a first home.
  • Ensuring the profits from flipping residential real estate are subject to taxation, to unlock more homes for Canadians to live in—because homes are not a speculative financial asset class for investors.
  • Making assignment sales fully taxable to ensure homes remain available for Canadians to buy.
  • Over $750 million for the Oil to Heat Pump Affordability program, which has to date provided support for over 1,500 low- to median-income households to help them transition from expensive oil heating to more energy efficient, cost-saving electric heat pumps.
  • Over $6.7 billion, on a cash basis, for the Canada Greener Homes Grant and Loan programs, which to date have provided over 172,000 grants of up to $5,000 and 58,000 interest-free loans of up to $40,000 to help Canadians save money by making their homes more energy efficient.

Aligning Immigration With Housing Capacity

Immigration enriches Canada's society, our culture, and our economy, but the combination of temporary and permanent immigration experienced last year put strains on Canada's ability to properly welcome and integrate newcomers into Canadian society. The government has taken steps to better manage temporary migration pressures while moderating the pace of its levels plan.

Under the 2024–2026 Immigration Levels Plan, the government has carefully moderated the intake of new permanent residents, moving towards a long-term approach that seeks to strike a balance between meeting the economic imperatives and enhancing the ability of communities to effectively welcome and integrate immigrants.

The government has also recently announced that it will reduce the share of temporary residents to 5 per cent of the overall population over the next three years. This will lead to approximately 600,000 fewer temporary residents in Canada compared to current levels.

Normalizing permanent and temporary immigration levels is critical to ensuring that newcomers have the opportunities and social supports they need to succeed when coming to Canada.

Further, these changes will ensure that newcomers, and all Canadians, have an affordable place to call home. The scale of this reduction is significant in the context of housing demand: in recent years, Canada has built about 220,000 housing units annually. 

The government has also taken steps to reduce the volume of asylum claims. In March 2023, Canada and the United States announced the expansion of the Safe Third Country Agreement, which requires asylum claimants to request protection in the first safe country they arrive in, unless they qualify for an exception to the Agreement. This has resulted in significantly fewer individuals claiming asylum at irregular crossings in between Canada's land ports of entry.

Also, on February 29, 2024, the government adjusted the travel requirements for Mexican citizens, who represented 17 per cent of all asylum claims in 2023. While the majority will continue to be able to travel visa-free to Canada, some Mexican nationals will now need to apply for a Canadian visitor visa. This responds to an increase in asylum claims made by Mexican citizens that are refused, withdrawn, or abandoned. In recent years, Mexican nationals represented the top source of asylum claims in Canada.

Table 1.2
Asylum Claimants by Top Five Countries of Citizenship in 2023
Top Five Countries in 2023 Total Claims
1. Mexico 23,910
2. India 11,285
3. Nigeria 9,155
4. Türkiye 6,385
5. Colombia 6,040

Source: Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada, December 31, 2023. Data is preliminary and subject to change.

Stabilizing International Student Intake to Alleviate Housing Pressures 

To ensure every Canadian student can find an affordable place to live while pursuing their education, the federal government is taking action to stabilize international student intake across the country. By better aligning temporary immigration pressures to a moderate pace, Canada can ensure a better capacity to welcome newcomers.

In January 2024, the government announced a new cap on the number of study permit applications, which is expected to decrease approved study permits by up to 28 per cent in 2024 for the groups included under the cap. The government also announced new eligibility criteria for the Post-Graduation Work Permit. This will help ease housing demand growth, while also protecting international students from fraudulent institutions and unsafe living conditions.

This builds on the government's announcement last fall to reform the International Student Program. As committed in the 2023 Fall Economic Statement, by fall 2024, the government will launch a new Recognized Institutions Framework to reward post-secondary institutions with high standards around selecting, supporting—including by providing access to housing—and retaining international students.

Taken together, the measures aim to ensure post-secondary students receive the support they need for success, and balance the pressures on student housing by aligning the number of students arriving in Canada with the number of available homes. By alleviating student housing pressures, generations of Canadians and international students today, and tomorrow, will have a more affordable pathway to getting a good education.

Credit for Paying Rent

Every month, millions of Canadian renters pay their rent in full and on-time. The government thinks that should count towards their credit worthiness when applying for their first mortgage, seeking to refinance a mortgage and in many other situations that require credit evaluations. For young Canadians and newcomers to Canada, this is even more important as they have a more difficult time establishing credit history.

More Gen Z and Millennials are renting today than the generations that came before them, with over 54 per cent of people between 25 and 34 years old being renters—and that number jumps to 81 per cent for people under 24 years old. In comparison, 25 per cent of Canadians between 55 and 64 years old are renters today. By making renters' payments count, we can help younger Canadians get ahead.

In Budget 2024, the government is setting a firm expectation with lenders, through its strengthened Canadian Mortgage Charter, to take a renter's on-time payment history into account when performing credit evaluations for mortgage applications.

  • Budget 2024 announces that the government is calling on banks, fintechs, and credit bureaus to prioritize launching tools to allow renters to opt-in to reporting their rent payment history to credit bureaus, to strengthen their credit scores and unlock pathways for more renters to become homeowners.

Together, this ability to strengthen one's credit score with on-time rental payment history—and make it easier to qualify for a mortgage, or even a lower rate—works in parallel to the government's efforts to advance consumer-driven banking. Further details on Canada's Framework for Consumer-Driven Banking are in Chapter 3.

Protecting Renters' Rights

Renters face unique challenges to ensuring their homes are properly maintained and that their landlords follow provincial laws. Renters can have a hard time navigating different provincial laws and lack resources to fight disputes with landlords—whether it concerns faulty heating, an illegal rent increase, or an illegal eviction. Tenant organizing and legal services can help renters.

When renters' rights are upheld, it gives people stability and housing security. They can stay in their homes and in their community—taking their kids to the same schools, being close to the same parks, and staying in the same job. It also gives them bargaining power, helping them keep their rent affordable.

The federal government is committed to protecting tenant rights and ensuring that renting a home is fair, open, and transparent.

  • Budget 2024 proposes to provide $15 million over five years, starting in 2024-25, for a new Tenant Protection Fund, which will provide funding to organizations that provide legal and informational services to tenants, as well as for tenants' rights advocacy organizations to raise awareness of renters' rights.
  • Budget 2024 also proposes a new Canadian Renters' Bill of Rights, to be developed and implemented in partnership with provinces and territories, to protect renters from unfair practices, make leases simpler, and increase price transparency. The government intends to crack down on renovictions, introduce a nationwide standard lease agreement, and require landlords to disclose historical rent prices of apartments.

Free legal support and advocacy for renters

The heating system in Patrick's apartment breaks down during the winter, threatening his health and safety, but his landlord refuses to arrange urgent repairs because they are on extended vacation. Patrick pays for emergency repairs, but his landlord refuses to fully reimburse his expenses after returning from vacation.

Patrick accesses free, federally funded legal information and advice to navigate his province's tenant dispute resolution process and succeeds in being fully reimbursed for his expenses.

30-Year Amortizations for First-Time Buyers Purchasing New Builds

The high cost of mortgage payments is a barrier for many younger Canadians hoping to buy that first time. Extending mortgage amortizations for first-time buyers purchasing new builds brings that monthly cost down, making it more affordable for first-time buyers, many of whom are young people still working their way up the salary ladder.

To restore generational fairness in the housing market for younger Canadians, the government is strengthening the Canadian Mortgage Charter with new measures to unlock pathways for Millennials and Gen Z to get the keys to their first home.

  • Budget 2024 announces the government is strengthening the Canadian Mortgage Charter to allow 30-year mortgage amortizations for first-time home buyers purchasing newly constructed homes. Extending the amortization limits by five years for first-time buyers purchasing new builds will enable more younger Canadians to afford a mortgage and will encourage new supply. This new insured mortgage product will be available to first-time buyers starting August 1, 2024. The government will bring forward regulatory amendments to implement this proposal. Further details will be released in the coming months.

The government will monitor whether housing inflation and supply conditions permit expanding access to 30-year insured mortgage amortizations more broadly.

Combined with the Tax-Free First Home Savings Account to save for a down payment faster and helping renters build their credit score with their on-time rental payment history, new access to 30-year mortgage amortizations will help first-time buyers purchasing new builds to access mortgages with lower monthly payments, making it easier to unlock the door to their first home.

Enhancing the Home Buyers' Plan

As home prices go up and the cost of living rises, saving for a down payment is more and more difficult. The federal government is enhancing the tax savings plans that help young Canadians save for their first home.

Across the country, and particularly in Canada's major cities, home prices have gone up—steeply. Support to help first-time buyers save must keep pace with market prices. That is why the government launched the Tax-Free First Home Savings Account, and why in Budget 2024, it is enhancing the Home Buyers' Plan. While home prices have risen—and building more new homes will help to lower prices—the government is unlocking pathways to a down payment so more Canadians can buy a home and build a good middle class life.

  • Budget 2024 announces the government's intention to amend the Income Tax Act to increase the Home Buyers' Plan withdrawal limit from $35,000 to $60,000, enabling first-time home buyers to use the tax benefits of an RRSP to save up to $25,000 more for their down payment, faster. The newly increased limit would be available to first-time buyers after April 16, 2024.
  • Budget 2024 also announces the government's intention to amend the Income Tax Act to temporarily extend the grace period during which homeowners are not required to repay their Home Buyers' Plan withdrawals to their RRSP by an additional three years. This grace period extension would apply to Home Buyers' Plan participants who made a first withdrawal between January 1, 2022, and December 31, 2025, who will now only have to begin repaying their Home Buyers' Plan withdrawals in the fifth year after the year in which they withdraw. For a couple who withdrew the maximum in 2023, extending the grace period could allow them to defer annual repayments as large as $4,667 by an additional three years.

This measure would reduce federal revenues by an estimated $90 million over six years, starting in 2023-24, and $5 million per year ongoing.

Tax-Free First Home Savings Account

The new Tax-Free First Home Savings Account is a registered savings account that allows Canadians to contribute up to $8,000 per year, and up to a lifetime limit of $40,000, towards their first down payment. To help Canadians reach their savings goals faster, Tax-Free First Home Savings Account contributions are tax deductible on annual income tax returns, like a Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP). And, like a Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA), withdrawals to purchase a first home—including any investment income on contributions—are non-taxable. Tax-free in; tax-free out.

As of April 16, more than 750,000 Canadians have already opened a Tax-Free First Home Savings Account to save for their first down payment—putting homeownership back within reach across the country and helping them reach their savings goals sooner.

Tax-Free First Home Savings Account

Darya is planning to buy a first home in 2029 in Saint John, NB. Starting in 2024, she began contributing $667 per month in her Tax-Free First Home Savings Account. These contributions can be deducted from her income at tax time, providing an annual federal tax refund of $1,640. After five years, Darya has saved $44,000 in her Tax-Free First Home Savings Account, including tax-free investment income, which she uses to make a 10-per-cent down payment on a $350,000 home and pay associated expenses. She can withdraw the full $44,000 tax-free, saving thousands of dollars that can be put towards her new home. In addition, she will claim the First-Time Home Buyers' Tax Credit for $1,500 in tax relief.

Tax-Free First Home Savings Account and Home Buyers' Plan

Mark and Mathieu want to buy a condo in Vancouver this year. They both make between $70,000 and $100,000 annually and contributed the maximum amount in their Tax-Free First Home Savings Account in 2023 and 2024 ($667 per month each), for a total of $32,000 between the two of them. These contributions were deducted from their income at tax time, providing total federal tax refunds of $6,560. Mark and Mathieu also both have $60,000 in their individual RRSPs.

Mark and Mathieu would like to make a 20 per cent down payment on a $760,000 condo to save on mortgage loan insurance premiums and interest payments. The couple is planning to use their Tax-Free First Home Savings Accounts and RRSPs for their $152,000 down payment. With the increased Home Buyers' Plan withdrawal limit, Mark and Mathieu can now withdraw $120,000 from their RRSPs without having to pay $15,000 in taxes, which they would have paid on the amount in excess of the previous Home Buyers' Plan withdrawal limit of $35,000 ($70,000 per couple). They will now have until 2029 to start repaying the $120,000 back to their RRSPs, instead of 2026 as per current rules. They will also claim the First-Time Home Buyers' Tax Credit for an additional $1,500 in tax relief.

The combined value of federal-provincial tax relief offered by the Tax-Free First Home Savings Account, compared to a taxable account for a couple living in Ontario, earning about $80,000 and each contributing $8,000 annually is detailed in Chart 1.4. Also shown is the maximum down payment a couple could make when combining the Tax-Free First Home Savings Account, Home Buyers' Plan, and the Home Buyers' Tax Credit.

Chart 1.4
A Pathway to a First Down Payment (for a couple)
Chart 1.4: A Pathway to a First Down Payment (for a couple)

Note: Tax savings comprise both the tax relief received through deductions in a tax return and the non-taxation of investment income. The down payment is comprised of the Tax-Free First Home Savings Account (FHSA), using the Home Buyers' Plan (HBP) to each withdraw $60,000 from RRSPs, and the maximum federal tax relief of $1,500 from the Home Buyers' Tax Credit.

Text version
Years Regular Contributions Contributions from Tax Relief Investment Income Home Buyers' Plan Home Buyers' Plan Increase Home Buyers' Tax Credit Total Amounts
1 $11,256 $4,744 $632       $16,632
2 $22,512 $9,488 $1,922       $33,922
3 $33,768 $14,232 $3,895       $51,895
4 $45,024 $18,976 $6,578       $70,578
5 $56,280 $23,720 $10,000       $90,000
Down Payment $56,280 $23,720 $10,000 $70,000 $50,000 $1,500 $211,500

Enhancing the Canadian Mortgage Charter

The government launched the Canadian Mortgage Charter to help ensure Canadians know about the fair, reasonable, and timely mortgage relief they can seek and receive from their financial institutions.

Mortgage lenders have a range of tools available for providing tailored relief. Lenders will communicate with borrowers facing mortgage hardship to discuss possible approaches based on the borrower's individual circumstances and criteria set by lenders and mortgage insurers.

The federal government and its financial sector agencies, particularly the Financial Consumer Agency of Canada and the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions, are closely monitoring the mortgage relief being offered by financial institutions. While Canadians are continuing to manage the impacts of higher mortgage rates, it is essential that borrowers and lenders remain proactive in identifying and addressing mortgage hardship.

  • Budget 2024 announces that the government is enhancing the Canadian Mortgage Charter to provide further support to Canadians facing mortgage hardship. These enhancements include:
    • Using rent payment history for mortgage applications, to help more renters become homeowners by improving their credit score;
    • Up to 30-year mortgage amortizations for first-time home buyers purchasing new builds, to make it easier to afford a first mortgage; and,
    • More detailed expectations for lenders to proactively contact borrowers, including making permanent mortgage relief measures available, where appropriate; and providing information to help borrowers make informed decisions, such as before renewal.

The Canadian Mortgage Charter sets out the following expectations:

  1. Proactively contacting homeowners well in advance of their mortgage renewal to inform them of their renewal and refinancing options (e.g., in some circumstances, lenders should contact borrowers at least 24 months in advance to begin discussing options).
  2. Allowing temporary extensions of the amortization period for mortgage holders at risk and, where appropriate, permanent amortization extensions for those that meet additional criteria set by mortgage insurers and lenders.
  3. Providing information about additional interest that mortgage holders will pay, over the total length of the mortgage, as a result of amortization extensions.
  4. Waiving fees and costs that would have otherwise been charged for relief measures, or when mortgage holders take action (e.g., increasing payments) to reduce an extended amortization as their financial situation improves.
  5. Not requiring insured mortgage holders to requalify under the insured minimum qualifying rate when switching lenders at mortgage renewal.
  6. Giving borrowers at risk the ability to make lump sum payments to avoid negative amortization or sell their principal residence without any prepayment penalties.
  7. Not charging interest on interest in the event that mortgage relief measures result in a temporary period of negative amortization.
  8. Calling on landlords, banks, credit bureaus, and fintech companies to make sure that rental history is taken into account in your credit score.
  9. Permitting up to 30-year mortgage amortization for first-time buyers purchasing new builds.

Switching mortgage lenders without requalifying for the stress test

Jessica, a new homeowner in Charlottetown, PEI, is nearing the completion of her first five-year term on a $350,000 mortgage for her townhouse. The Mortgage Charter sets an expectation for her bank to send an early notice informing her of her renewal options, which gives her plenty of time to shop around for a better rate. Jessica works with a mortgage broker to evaluate her options and finds a more competitive mortgage rate at a different lender. As a borrower with mortgage insurance, Jessica is able to switch lenders at renewal without needing to requalify under the minimum qualifying rate (the stress test).

Because the Mortgage Charter helped inform Jessica that she could switch lenders without another stress test, Jessica is able to reduce her mortgage rate from 6 per cent to 5.5 per cent and save around $1,000 per year.

Extending amortization and not paying interest on interest

Éric and Maya are new parents in Québec City, Quebec who purchased their first home two years ago. The fixed monthly payment of around $2,300 that they make on their $550,000 variable rate mortgage is no longer covering their mortgage interest costs at the current interest rate, creating a situation where their mortgage balance is growing and interest is being charged on interest.

Éric and Maya receive a letter from their bank informing them of the situation. After discussing options with their bank, Éric and Maya take into account their budget constraints and decide to temporarily extend their amortization by an additional five years to help make their payments more manageable. Because the Mortgage Charter sets expectations for lenders to proactively contact borrowers facing mortgage hardship, Éric and Maya are able to get back to paying down their mortgage balance and avoid about $400 in interest on interest.

When interest rates fall, the bank will work with Éric and Maya to help them return to their original amortization schedule.

Halal Mortgages

Canada is home to a vibrant and growing market of alternative financing products, including halal mortgages, that enable Muslim Canadians, and other diverse communities, to further participate in the housing market.

  • Budget 2024 announces that the government is exploring new measures to expand access to alternative financing products, like halal mortgages. This could include changes in the tax treatment of these products or a new regulatory sandbox for financial service providers, while ensuring adequate consumer protections are in place.

In March 2024, the government began consulting financial services providers and diverse communities to understand how federal policies can better support the needs of all Canadians seeking to become homeowners. The government will provide an update in the 2024 Fall Economic Statement.

Strengthening Mortgage Income Verification

Financial institutions maintain rigorous policies to verify borrower income when determining someone's ability to repay their mortgage. Independently verifying borrower income helps financial institutions detect and deter the types of fraud or misrepresentation that can increase the costs of mortgages for all borrowers. However, fraud risks are always evolving—and so too are the tools to combat these risks.

  • Budget 2024 announces the government's intention to consult with the mortgage industry on making available a tool through the Canada Revenue Agency to complement the existing strategies of financial institutions to verify borrower income for mortgages.

Banning Foreign Buyers of Canadian Homes

For years, foreign money has been coming into Canada to buy up residential real estate, increasing housing affordability concerns in cities across the country, and particularly major centres. To address this, the government introduced a two-year ban on the purchase of residential property by foreign investors, effective January 1, 2023.

To help ensure that homes are used for Canadians to live in, not as a speculative asset class for foreign investors, on February 4, 2024, the government announced it intends to extend the ban on foreign buying of Canadian homes by an additional two years, to January 1, 2027.

Foreign commercial enterprises and people who are not Canadian citizens or permanent residents will continue to be prohibited from purchasing residential property in Canada.

Cracking Down on Short-Term Rentals

Homes are for Canadians to live in, not speculative assets for investors. The short-term rentals listed on platforms such as Airbnb and VRBO are keeping 18,900 homes off the market in Montréal, Toronto, and Vancouver alone, based on estimates from 2020, meaning families, students, workers, and seniors are having to compete for fewer homes.

To unlock Canada's housing supply for Canadians to live in, in the 2023 Fall Economic Statement, the federal government proposed tax changes to incentivize the return of non-compliant short-term rentals to the long-term market and to support the work of provinces and territories that have restricted short-term rentals.

These changes would apply as of January 1, 2024, to deny income tax deductions on income earned from short-term rentals that do not comply with the relevant provincial or municipal laws. By denying income tax deductions, the government is removing the profit incentive for short-term rental operators.

Some provinces, including Quebec and British Columbia, and municipalities such as Toronto, Montréal, and Vancouver, have already taken action to return short-term rentals to the long-term market for Canadians to live in. To support the work of municipalities to unlock homes for Canadians, the federal government is committed to launching a $50 million short-term rental enforcement fund. The government is currently engaging with stakeholders to design a program that will be responsive to municipal needs, and will announce further details later this year.

Cracking Down on Real Estate Fraud

Cracking down on real estate tax fraud protects home buyers and levels the playing field for those who play by the rules. The government is committed to reinforcing the fairness of the tax system and combatting tax non-compliance across the housing sector.

  • Budget 2024 proposes to provide $73.1 million over five years, starting in 2024-25, and $14.7 million per year ongoing to the Canada Revenue Agency to continue addressing tax non-compliance in real estate transactions. By ensuring that everyone pays their fair share, the government is protecting home buyers from artificial market distortions that increase home prices. 

Advancing National Flood Insurance

Unlike previous generations, homeownership now comes with the burdens of paying for the costs of climate change, due to the increasing frequency and severity of natural disasters. Put simply, Millennial homeowners have to worry if they can afford flood insurance, or if they can access it at all. This wasn't a common concern for their parents and grandparents.

As announced in Budget 2023, the government intends to deliver a flood reinsurance program and a separate insurance subsidy for households at high risk of flooding.

  • Budget 2024 announces the government's intention to establish a subsidiary of the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation to deliver flood reinsurance.
  • To advance this commitment, Budget 2024 proposes to provide $15 million to the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) in 2025-26 to advance implementation of a national flood insurance program by 2025.

The government is advancing work with provinces and territories, in partnership with the insurance industry, to stand-up a low-cost flood insurance program for high-risk properties within the next twelve months.

Flood insurance to protect Canadians' homes

Joaquin and Kariné own a home in an area with a high flood risk. Because there are limited private insurance options available to cover homes in high flood risk areas, they face challenges insuring their home.

Like many Canadian homeowners, their home is a large part of their life savings. Joaquin and Kariné still have a mortgage, which adds to their worries about potential disasters, such as a flood, damaging their property. This situation leaves them with limited financial flexibility and poses a risk to their financial security, should their home suffer damage.  

Canada's flood insurance program will help Joaquin and Kariné access insurance coverage and protect their home in a way that is affordable.

Confronting the Financialization of Housing

Housing should be treated as homes for people, instead of a speculative asset class. When purchasing a home, Canadians might expect to be bidding against other potential buyers, not a multi-billion-dollar hedge fund. The role of large, corporate investors in our single-family housing market needs to be addressed.

  • Budget 2024 announces that the government intends to restrict the purchase and acquisition of existing single-family homes by very large, corporate investors. The government will consult in the coming months and provide further details in the 2024 Fall Economic Statement.

1.3 Helping Canadians Who Can't Afford a Home

When you have a home, you have stability, security, and an increased sense of well-being. Everyone deserves this. One of the most heart wrenching realities of the housing crisis is the increase in people struggling to find housing, especially since the pandemic. Making sure everyone has a place to live is the right thing to do, and it's the Canadian thing to do.

A strong and growing community housing sector supports vulnerable people, including those making low incomes, those fleeing violence, and those experiencing homelessness. It also keeps affordable housing affordable, builds new affordable options that meet everyone's needs, and supports strong, diverse communities. Everyone has a right to decent housing, regardless of income.

Budget 2024 will invest to increase the amount of affordable housing in Canada so we can restore what was lost over the past few decades, and help bring chronic homelessness in Canadian communities to an end.

Key Ongoing Actions

  • Over $4 billion towards preventing and reducing homelessness, through Reaching Home, Canada's Homelessness Strategy—including $100 million to support communities in responding to unsheltered homelessness this winter.
  • $4 billion through the Rapid Housing Initiative, which is building more than 15,500 affordable homes for people experiencing homelessness or in severe housing need by 2026.
  • Nearly $960 million provided since 2017 via the Interim Housing Assistance Program to support provinces and municipalities offering transitional housing support to asylum claimants.
  • Over $458 million for the new Greener Affordable Housing stream of the Canada Greener Homes Loan program to provide low-interest loans and grants for energy efficient retrofits of affordable housing, which reduces operational costs for non-profit housing providers.
  • Over $4 billion over seven years, starting in 2024-25, to implement an Urban, Rural and Northern Indigenous Housing Strategy and to establish a National Indigenous Housing Centre.

Enhancing the Affordable Housing Fund

Canada's affordable housing stock is too small to meet growing demand, resulting in too many people living in unaffordable and inadequate housing. More affordable housing is particularly needed to ensure persons with disabilities and low-income families can find an affordable place to call home.

This is why the government is investing billions of dollars to support affordable housing providers, to repair existing affordable homes, and to build new ones, through programs such as the $14 billion Affordable Housing Fund.

The 2023 Fall Economic Statement provided an additional $1 billion for the Affordable Housing Fund to support non-profit, co-op, and public housing providers in building more than 7,000 affordable homes.

  • To build and maintain more affordable housing, Budget 2024 proposes to provide $976 million over five years, starting in 2024-25, and $24 million in future years, to the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation to launch a new Rapid Housing stream under the Affordable Housing Fund to build deeply affordable housing, supportive housing, and shelters for our most vulnerable.

Protecting and Expanding Affordable Housing

In the last decade, hundreds of thousands of affordable homes have been lost in Canada—by being destroyed after a lack of maintenance and upkeep, turned into more expensive rental units, or converted into luxury condos. Today, our community housing sector accounts for only 4 per cent of Canada's housing market, while 10 per cent of Canadians are low-income and in need of affordable housing. More must be done. We must protect our affordable housing supply for low- and modest-income families.

The government is committed to expanding and transforming this sector by 2030 and beyond to further support Canadian households, including young Canadians.

  • Budget 2024 proposes $477.2 million over five years, starting in 2024-25, and $147.8 million in future years, to launch a new $1.5 billion Canada Rental Protection Fund, to be administered by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, to protect the stock of affordable housing in Canada. The Fund will provide $1 billion in loans and $470 million in contributions to support affordable housing providers to acquire units and preserve rents at a stable level for decades to come, preventing those units from being redeveloped into out of reach condos or luxury rental units.
    • This new Fund will be co-led and co-funded by the federal government and other partners.
    • This program will help mobilize investments and financing from the charitable sector, private sector, and other orders of government.

Keeping Non-Profit and Co-op Homes Affordable

In recognition of the financial challenges facing community and social housing providers, such as co-ops, the federal government provides support to affordable housing providers to ensure existing affordable housing can be maintained. To date, the Federal Community Housing Initiative has already delivered nearly $150 million to ensure 47,000 homes can remain affordable for vulnerable Canadians, including persons with disabilities, single-parent families, seniors, and newcomers.

  • Budget 2024 announces the government's intention to introduce flexibilities to the Federal Community Housing Initiative to ensure that eligible housing providers can access funding to maintain housing affordability for low-income tenants and co-op members.

Lower Energy Bills for Renters and Homeowners

To address the twin challenges of energy affordability and climate change, the government will launch a Canada Green Buildings Strategy. The strategy will help lower home energy bills and reduce building emissions by supporting energy efficient retrofits. This represents an important next step in meeting Canada's climate targets and helping Canadians save money on their energy bills.

  • Budget 2024 proposes to provide $903.5 million over six years, starting in 2024-25, to Natural Resources Canada as follows:
    • $800 million over five years, starting in 2025-26, to launch a new Canada Greener Homes Affordability Program that will support the direct installation of energy efficiency retrofits for Canadian households with low- to median-incomes. This program represents the next phase of the Canada Greener Homes Initiative and will be co-delivered with provincial and territorial partners. It will also be complemented by CMHC's Greener Homes Loan program, which provides interest-free loans of up to $40,000 for energy efficiency home retrofits.   
    • $73.5 million over five years, starting in 2024-25, to renew and modernize existing energy efficiency programs that offer tools to building owners like the ISO 50001 Energy Management Systems Standard and the ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager. This funding will also spur the development of better, more ambitious building codes to further reduce emissions and lower energy bills. The federal government will encourage provinces and territories to adopt these top-tier building codes.
    • $30 million over five years, starting in 2024-25, to continue developing a national approach to home energy labelling, which will empower prospective home buyers with information about the energy efficiency of their new home, with the support of energy auditors.

Natural Resources Canada will announce further details on the Canada Green Buildings Strategy in the coming weeks. 

Lowering energy bills for homeowners

Maya and Sophie are homeowners with low incomes and are struggling to afford their energy bills. They want to make their home more cost efficient. Through the Canada Greener Homes Affordability Program (CGHAP), an assessment determines that the most effective energy efficiency upgrades for their home are attic insulation and air sealing. At no cost to Maya and Sophie, CGHAP arranges the direct installation of these upgrades, which will prevent heat from leaking out, improve the comfort of their home, save them money on their energy bills, and reduce their home heating emissions.

Lowering energy bills for renters

Sierra rents an apartment where she faces high heating bills from her baseboard heaters and does not have air conditioning. With the agreement of her landlord, an assessment through CGHAP determines her apartment would be a good candidate for a heat pump. At no cost to Sierra, CGHAP arranges the direct installation of a heat pump that reduces her heating costs and provides air conditioning, leaving her more money at the end of the month, and with a more comfortable home, too.

Addressing Homelessness and Encampments

Homelessness and encampments impact every community in Canada, affecting some of the most vulnerable Canadians, including 2SLGBTQI+ youth, Black and racialized people, persons with disabilities, and Indigenous people. To help ensure everyone has a safe and affordable place to call home, the government has committed over $4 billion through Reaching Home: Canada's Homelessness Strategy, for communities to provide services, transitional housing, and shelter to those who need it most. This is double the funding originally provided for Reaching Home in Budget 2017.

To respond to the urgent needs that communities are facing, the government provided an additional $100 million in 2023-24 to Infrastructure Canada for Reaching Home: Canada's Homelessness Strategy to support emergency funding over the winter for those experiencing or at risk of unsheltered homelessness—including those living in encampments.

  • Budget 2024 proposes to provide an additional $1.3 billion over four years, starting in 2024-25, to Infrastructure Canada for Reaching Home: Canada's Homelessness Strategy, as follows:
    • $1.0 billion over four years, starting in 2024-25, to stabilize funding under the program. Recognizing the enduring nature of this challenge, this investment reflects the government's commitment to support organizations that do vitally important work across the country to prevent and reduce homelessness. Of this investment, $50 million will focus on accelerating community-level reductions in homelessness. This investment will support communities across Canada as they adopt best practices and lessons learned from other jurisdictions to reduce the time it takes to move individuals and families into more stable housing.
    • $250 million over two years, starting in 2024-25, to address the urgent issue of encampments and unsheltered homelessness. This funding will require provinces and territories to cost-match federal investments, leveraging a total of $500 million. This will help communities scale-up their efforts to train homelessness support workers, respond to the unique experiences of those affected by unsheltered homelessness, including those living in encampments, and renovate and build more shelters and transitional homes for those who need them.
Support for Reaching Home: Canada's Homelessness Strategy

Since Reaching Home was launched, it has supported projects across the country. Existing support to advance innovative construction includes:

  • Under the Indigenous Homelessness stream, the Mi'kmaw Native Friendship Society received $904,000 in 2021 to build the Diamond Bailey House in Halifax, with 34 shelter beds, 11 dorm-style rooms and 7 bachelor apartments.
  • Under the program's Rural and Remote Homelessness stream, Community Living Huntsville received $125,000 through United Way Simcoe Muskoka to support a transitional housing project that supports adults with developmental disabilities, who have experienced chronic or periodic homelessness, to reach independent living within four years.

Building Homes in Indigenous Communities

Access to safe and affordable housing is critical to improving socio-economic outcomes and ensuring a better future for Indigenous communities. Since 2015 the federal government has committed more than $6.7 billion to support housing in Indigenous communities and a further $4.3 billion to advance an Urban, Rural, and Northern Indigenous Housing strategy set to launch in 2024-25. As of December 31, 2023, Indigenous Services Canada, in collaboration with the Canada Mortgage Housing Corporation, has supported over 22,000 homes in 611 First Nations communities.

As outlined in Chapter 6, Budget 2024 also proposes additional investments to support housing and enabling infrastructure needs in First Nations, Inuit, and Métis communities.

The Urban, Rural and Northern Indigenous Housing Strategy

Indigenous households in urban, rural, and northern communities across Canada face challenges accessing adequate and affordable housing. To address this, Budget 2022 and Budget 2023 committed a total of $4.3 billion over seven years, starting in 2024-25, to implement a co-developed Urban, Rural and Northern Indigenous Housing Strategy. The Strategy will be designed and implemented to complement the federal government's previous $6.7 billion in investments to support existing distinctions-based housing strategies for First Nations, Inuit, and Métis.

Informed by Indigenous-led engagements with Indigenous governments, organizations and housing providers, the funding will be delivered directly by First Nations, Inuit, and Métis governments, Modern Treaty holders and Self-Governing Indigenous Governments, and through a new Indigenous-led National Indigenous Housing Centre to ensure support will be provided to all Indigenous people.

Sheltering Asylum Claimants

While providing asylum claimants with a safe place to live falls under provincial and municipal jurisdiction, the federal government recognizes the need for all orders of government to work together to address pressures on the shelter system.

Since 2017, the federal government has provided almost $960 million through the Interim Housing Assistance Program, which helps provincial and municipal governments prevent homelessness for asylum claimants on a cost-sharing basis.

  • Budget 2024 proposes to provide $1.1 billion over three years, starting in 2024-25, to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada to extend the Interim Housing Assistance Program. Funding in 2026-27 will be conditional on provincial and municipal investments in permanent transitional housing solutions for asylum claimants.

The federal government is working with all orders of government to find long-term solutions to prevent asylum seekers from experiencing homelessness.

Chapter 1
More Affordable Homes
millions of dollars
  2023-2024 2024-2025 2025-2026 2026-2027 2027-2028 2028-2029 Total
1.1. Building More Homes -49 250 542 791 1,121 1,295 3,950
Building Homes on Public Lands 0 18 44 91 13 10 176
Converting Underused Federal Offices into Homes1 0 28 102 96 86 97 408
Less: Projected Savings
0 -22 -38 -110 -183 -255 -606
Building Apartments, Bringing Rents Down 0 0 41 35 92 159 328
Year-Over-Year Reallocation of Funding
-49 18 10 35 18 -6 27
Topping-up the Housing Accelerator Fund 0 101 99 100 100 0 400
A New Canada Housing Infrastructure Fund 0 13 122 290 471 604 1,500
Changing How We Build Homes2 0 33 49 0 0 0 82
Less: Funds Sourced from Existing Departmental Resources
0 -13 -19 0 0 0 -32
Housing Design Catalogue 0 12 0 0 0 0 12
Less: Funds Sourced from Existing Departmental Resources
0 -12 0 0 0 0 -12
Modernizing Housing Data 0 2 6 6 6 0 20
Adding Additional Suites to Single Family Homes 0 0 35 102 177 95 410
Accelerating Investment to Build More Apartments 0 1 27 140 335 585 1,088
Building More Student Housing 0 1 3 5 5 5 19
More Skilled Trades Workers Building Homes 0 50 50 0 0 0 100
Less: Funds Sourced from Existing Departmental Resources
0 -5 -15 0 0 0 -20
Recognizing Foreign Construction Credentials and Improving Labour Mobility 0 25 25 0 0 0 50
1.2. Making it Easier to Own or Rent a Home 5 19 34 19 14 9 101
Protecting Renters' Rights 0 3 3 3 3 3 15
Enhancing the Home Buyers' Plan 5 20 20 20 15 10 90
Cracking Down on Real Estate Fraud 0 15 15 15 15 15 73
Less: Expected Revenues
0 -18 -18 -18 -18 -18 -92
Advancing National Flood Insurance 0 0 15 0 0 0 15
1.3. Helping Canadians Who Can't Afford a Home 0 751 1,029 1,158 966 566 4,470
Enhancing the Affordable Housing Fund 0 100 219 219 219 219 976
Protecting and Expanding Affordable Housing 0 5 120 118 117 117 477
Lower Energy Bills for Renters and Homeowners 0 12 65 123 223 230 654
Addressing Homelessness and Encampments 0 225 225 431 406 0 1,287
Sheltering Asylum Claimants 0 409 400 267 0 0 1,076
Additional Investments – More Affordable Homes 0 2 2 0 0 0 3
Supporting the Federal Housing Advocate 0 2 2 0 0 0 3
Funding proposed for the CHRC to support the Office of the Federal Housing Advocate to fulfill its mandate of promoting and protecting the right to a safe and affordable place to call home.
Chapter 1 - Net Fiscal Impact -44 1,022 1,607 1,968 2,101 1,870 8,524

Note: Numbers may not add due to rounding. A glossary of abbreviations used in this table can be found at the end of Annex 1.

1 The proposed funding will generate additional savings, over and above the amounts included in this budget, that will help Public Services and Procurement Canada achieve its Refocusing Government Spending reduction targets, as outlined in the organization's 2024 to 2025 Departmental Plan.

2 Funding for Regional Development Agencies under Changing How We Build Homes is sourced from the Budget 2024 Boosting Regional Economic Growth measure found in Chapter 4.

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