A housing needs study of northern BC has found the majority of houses were built in the 60’s and 70’s. And that could lead accessibility and energy efficiency issues in the future. The report suggests the senior population will grow dramatically however overall population growth will be volatile as the economy continues to rely on the natural resource industry.
The study was funded by BC Housing. It was conducted by the University of Northern British Columbia’s Community Development Institute (CDI) and released at the Northern BC Housing Conference at UNBC.
The report examined communities from 100 Mile House to Fort St John and west to Prince Rupert. It identified a significant increase in our senior population is on the way, which could lead to housing affordability issues.
It also found that many towns and cities lack the types of quality housing that appeal to the skilled professionals they are trying to recruit. “We found that regarding the age of the housing stock, the majority of it is 35 years or older,” said CDI Co-Director Marleen Morris, the study’s author. “That present a number of problems – they’re not energy efficient, it affects mobility issues.”
The study was conducted in order to better understand key trends, opportunities, and challenges influencing housing demand and supply in the north.