B.C. puts $2B toward low-interest loans for builders of affordable housing

·1 min read

VICTORIA — The B.C. government says it's investing $2 billion in a low-interest loan program for builders of affordable housing.

Housing Minister David Eby says the financing will be provided to private developers and community groups through the province's HousingHub program, a division of BC Housing.

The housing will target projects for renters and buyers with average household incomes of $75,000.

Eby says the loans will be provided at below-market rates and in return, developers will commit to passing the construction savings on to residents through more affordable rents and housing prices.

He says the loans will be repaid once construction is complete, allowing HousingHub to reinvest in more units.

Finance Minister Selina Robinson says the funding is part of Budget 2021, which will be unveiled in full next week.

"For far too long, housing in British Columbia was viewed as a commodity and a tool for building wealth, rather than a basic necessity of a home," said Robinson, who was the housing minister before taking on the finance portfolio.

"The simple truth is, affordable housing is life changing."

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 15, 2021.

The Canadian Press