Access to adequate and affordable housing is a key part of immigrant settlement. Immigrants must find a home before looking for other essential services such as language and job training, education for their children, and employment.
Housing is an important indicator of quality of life, affecting health, social interaction, community participation, economic activity, and general well-being.
Immigrants face a critical challenge: finding their ‘place’ with static rental stocks and rapidly rising demand – and they must do so with incomes that are frequently below the Canadian average.
In Canada’s largest cities, including Vancouver, high housing costs are pushing newcomers out into the suburbs, and possibly away from key supports and programs.
Immigrants often spend around half of all household income on housing in the initial few years of settlement and are more likely than the Canadian-born to be living in inadequate, unsafe or overcrowded housing.
Immigrants and refugees in Canada have high home purchasing rates, indicating that owning their own home is a top priority.