Housing

City of Chilliwack recognizes housing as a key element in a sustainable complete community. Improving the availability of appropriate, affordable and accessible housing choices for all existing and future residents is an integral component in creating a healthy built environment.

The following statistics briefly illustrate the affordability in Chilliwack as well as the homeless count:

  • Percentage of households spending 30% or more of 2010 total income on shelter costs (National Household Survey, 2011):
    • 29.5% total
    • 22.5% owner
    • 51.3% renter
  • 221 Homeless people counted in 2017 (FVRD Homeless Survey, 2017)
  • Average 2010 household income: $66,524 (National Household Survey, 2011)
  • 2013 income to purchase
    • A $352,842 single family dwelling is $57,510
    • A $246,955 townhouse is $42,714
    • A $144,406 apartment is $24,948
      *based on 10% down payment, 5.33% fixed 5yr mortgage rate over 25 years
  • Average 2014 rental rates (Rental Market Report by CMHC, 2014):
    • 1 bedroom was approximately $628 per month in 2014.
    • 2 bedroom units were approximately $778 per month in 2014.
    • 3 bedroom units were approximately $903 per month in 2014.

HOUSING POLICIES AND INITIATIVES

  • Official Community Plan Policies
    • The City of Chilliwack Official Community Plan includes objectives and policies that identify ways of achieving the growing housing needs for the citizens of Chilliwack
  • Affordable Housing Strategy (2008)
    • The Strategy identifies ways in which new emergency shelter, transitional and supportive housing for people with addictions and mental health issues, and affordable housing for low income households can be developed, with the support of public, private and non-profit sectors.
    • City of Chilliwack has developed this housing strategy to address a range of needs across the housing continuum.
      The housing contunuum

      Source: Housing Demand and Affordability in the Fraser Valley Regional District (December, 2009)
  • Since 2008 - the increase in new affordable housing units is:
    • Market: 626 units
      • 54 small unit rental apartments (55+ years)
      • 40 small unit apartments at Spadina/Corbould (55+ years)
      • 398 apartments (short-term partial tax) revitalization exemption
        • Additional 26 apartments over commercial pending (short-term partial tax revitalization exemption) 
        • 76 adaptable apartments for aging in place
          • 32 completed; additional 46 under construction
    • Non-market: 242 units / beds + 22 beds emergency shelter
      • 33 units supportive housing for youth at risk & adults with mental illness
      • 28 units supportive housing for adults with mental illness
      • 30 beds transitional supportive housing for low income or marginalized individuals
      • 23 units transitional units (Chilliwack Health & Housing Centre 2012)
      • 26 beds transitional housing (Ruth & Naomi’s 2013)
      • 18 beds emergency shelter (Ruth & Naomi’s 2014)
      • 4 emergency beds for youth at risk (Cyrus Centre 2014)
      • Up to 40 beds extreme weather emergency shelter (2014)
      • 2 units supportive housing (Chilliwack Housing for Homeless Foundation partnered with Chilliwack Supportive Housing Society)
    • Projects Underway:

      - 65 Units "affordable housing" rental units (Mamele’awt Qweesome and To’o Housing Society 2017)

      - 35 Units supportive "affordable housing" rental units for families with children (Ruth and Naomis 2017)

  • Chilliwack Healthier Community
    • Chilliwack Healthier Community (CHC) is a partnership of local service agencies and organizations who share a common vision of a healthy, caring community that focuses on quality of life. CHC is committed to resolving complex social issues through facilitating new partnerships amongst local service providers, so as to increase accessibility to services and streamline their delivery.
    • The key areas of focus for CHC are: affordable housing, mental health, public safety and healthier lifestyles.
    • CHC holds a monthly information and networking breakfast that features keynote speakers from various agencies, organizations, and government entities.
    • The CHC framework for action is the Healthier Community Strategic Action Plan ( 2014) . It is the result of a collaborative effort involving government, local agencies, and individuals keyed on community strengths, issues and opportunities; established priorities; and a shared vision for a healthier Chilliwack.
      • It identifies six goals, whose overall intent is to improve individual and community health outcomes by addressing the community’s most pressing social issues, in particular, homelessness, mental health and substance use, and other priority health needs affecting people of all ages and stages of life. For each goal, the plan lists objectives and proposed actions. The plan is a guiding document – not set in stone, but meant to be revised over time as new priorities emerge and goals are achieved.
    • CHC Partners agree that “action” and “results” are the keys to CHC success. As one member said recently, “These can’t be just more meetings.”
    • Chilliwack Healthier Community, Housing First Task Team: Through community consulting, Chilliwack Housing Community has identified low barrier housing as the highest housing priority need at this time. A task team has been formed to research potential housing options and put in motion a plan to ensure there are housing options to support those who are homeless or at risk of homelessness and actively experiencing mental health and substance use issues. Low barrier housing is defined as housing where a minimum number of expectations are placed on people who wish to live there. The aim is to have as few barriers as possible to allow more people access to services.
  • Adaptable Housing
    On June 21, 2011 Council received a report on Adaptable Housing for information and directed staff to develop bylaw changes to require 50% of all new apartment units be built to the Adaptable Housing Standards of B.C. Building Code, effective January 1, 2012. Adaptable apartment units are recognized a benefit to implementing these standards into City wide apartment developments for current and future residents to age in place. 76 adaptable apartment units have been built to date (January, 2015).
  • Supportive Housing Assistance Policy (Community Development Initiatives Funding Policy)
    • The Policy establishes an objective process with predefined criteria to ensure equitable distribution of limited financial resources to offset the development costs of suitable, not for profit, supportive housing initiatives within the City of Chilliwack. The Chilliwack Health and Housing Center and Ruth & Naomi’s Mission have received funding to date.
    • Visit the regulatory bylaws page for more information.
  • Large Supportive Recovery Home Policy
    • Outlines procedures to regulate market and non-market Large Supportive Recovery Homes with 7 to a maximum of 10 persons in care (including on-site staff) within the City of Chilliwack.  Call the City of Chilliwack Planning Department for more details.
  • Small Unit Apartment Development Cost Charges
    • The City of Chilliwack Development Cost Bylaw offers a reduced DCC rate for small apartments which are no larger than 57m² and may or may not include amenity storage and laundry spaces within the unit.
    • Visit the regulatory bylaws page for more information.
  • Downtown Revitalization Tax Exemption
    • The Official Community Plan for the City of Chilliwack identifies the revitalization of the downtown as a priority. In 2004, the Community Charter was introduced, offering a new revitalization tax exemption opportunity. As a result of this, the City of Chilliwack has established a downtown revitalization tax exemption program.
    • Visit the regulatory bylaws page for more information.
  • Provincial Programs – BC Housing
    • The Rental Assistance Program (RAP) was introduced by BC Housing in 2006 to help low-income working families with the cost of private market rental housing. Working families earning up to $35,000.00 a year can receive direct rent subsidies ranging from $50 up to $765 per month. The average monthly subsidy is $405.
    • Shelter Aid for Elderly Renters (SAFER) helps make housing more affordable for low-income seniors who rent in the private market. The average monthly subsidy is $158.
    • For more information about BC Housing call 1866-465-6873 or visit their webpage at www.bchousing.com.

PROJECTS DEVELOPED SINCE 2008

  • Affordable Housing Apartment (40-units) at 9340 Corbould Street - small unit apartment rental.
  • Chilliwack Health & Housing Center (45921 Hocking Avenue) provides a broad range of community support services and a 22 unit supportive housing component (the Annis Residence).
  • Ruth & Naomi’s Mission (46130 Margaret Avenue) provides a valuable service to the community, providing food, clothing, support and emergency shelter to homeless and marginalized people since 2003. Ruth and Naomi’s also offer addiction services, education, and training for reintegration into the community.
  • The Village (8937 School Street) provides 33 apartments of supportive housing in a four-storey building for adults with mental-health barriers and youth at risk of homelessness. This site is operated by the Chilliwack Community Services Society (CCSS) with support services provided by the Creative Center Society (CCS).

RELATED DOCUMENTS & PRESENTATIONS

LINKS

Attachments
Description Date File Size
2015 Chilliwack Homelessness and Low Barrier Housing Study 2015-06-04 364KB