A new study has found 47 per cent of participants did not ask for repairs out of fear it would negatively impact their tenancy, highlighting the challenges of the rental market in Victoria. (Travis Paterson/News Staff)

Study highlights critical impacts of housing market in Victoria

76 % feel they will be forced to leave Victoria due to housing insecurity

Renters in Greater Victoria face more harsh challenges, a new study shows. While renters living in the region consider Victoria home, 77 per cent said they would stay if they had a choice, but with high rent and low availability 76 per cent said it is somewhat likely they will be forced to leave due to housing pressure.

“People feel that even if they have housing, their number will soon be up,” says Cameron Welch of Victoria Tenant Action Group. “And when it is, being forced out into this housing crisis is like being thrown to the wolves. So they’re stuck, they’re always stressed out, and they’re vulnerable to being exploited.”

RELATED: Canadians are getting poorer and are borrowing money

The study by Community Social Planning Council of Victoria and the Victoria Tenants Action Group revealed the tight housing market in Victoria means renovicitons, demovictions, discrimination, living in poor quality housing and increased vulnerability for renters.

Taking the survey online and in-person round-tables, 500 renters took part highlighting the critical impact of affordability and lack of availability has on renters, the high levels of discrimination and feeling trapped in poor conditions.

RELATED: Broken Hearts: Display at controversial Vancouver Island supportive housing site torn down

More than 90 per cent of participants reported high rent as barrier to finding housing, 55 per cent cited and increasing cost as a threat to remaining in their current home and 47 per cent did not ask for repairs out of fear it would negatively impact their tenancy — one participant noted than after telling their landlord they needed pest control, an appraiser was called.

Nearly half of the participants felt they had been in a living situation in which their rights were violated, only one eighth had chosen to go through dispute resolution as most renters lack confidence they’ll be protected under the Residential Tenancy Branch. Citing impacts on life, unpredictability of outcome, uncertainty about the law and time as reasons for their reluctance.

RELATED: B.C. real estate board blames stress test for dampening home sales in February

“The CSPC did this study because the real experiences of renters are lost in policy dialogues, meaning well-intended policies are often misaligned,” says Diana Gibson, Senior Researcher with the Community Social Planning Council. “Anyone engaged in housing policy and planning will want to look at this data.”

The report includes policy priorities indicated by renters and a call for more action by the municipal and provincial governments.



kendra.crighton@blackpress.ca

Follow us on Instagram
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is looking for this man, who they say stole a charity box. (Facebook/Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers)
Crime Stoppers looking for man who stole charity box from Saanich grocery store

Anyone with information asked to call Crime Stoppers

A crowd gathers at Mount Newton Cross Road and Highway 17 on Oct. 23. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)
Highway reopens after rally supporting Mi’kmaq fishing rights in Nova Scotia

Central Saanich demonstration interrupts Friday afternoon traffic

Sooke man Rik Downer spent two weeks in the Royal Jubilee Hospital after contracting flesh-eating bacteria. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)
Sooke man’s bumped knee leads to fight for life

Man unknowingly contracts case of rare flesh-eating disease

Fired Up! pottery studio general manager, Kristin Godwin (left to right), owner, Janna Gisler, and Gisler’s mother, Laura Malo, hold up past Boob Print Night creations — an annual event that fundraises for breast cancer research. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)
Saturday is the ‘breast’ night of the year, say Victoria pottery studio staff

Fired Up! pottery studio’s annual Boob Print Night is raising money for breast cancer

B.C. Liberal leader Andrew Wilkinson, B.C. NDP leader John Horgan and B.C. Greens leader Sonia Furstenau. (Black Press Media)
VIDEO: One day until B.C. voters go to the polls in snap election defined by pandemic

NDP Leader John Horgan’s decision to call an election comes more than a year ahead of schedule and during a pandemic

Advance polls are open from Oct. 15 to 21 with election day on Oct. 24. (Black Press Media file photo)
100 Mile Conservation officer Joel Kline gingerly holds an injured but very much alive bald eagle after extracting him from a motorist’s minivan. (Photo submitted)
B.C. driver thought he retrieved a dead bald eagle – until it came to life in his backseat

The driver believed the bird to be dead and not unconscious as it turned out to be

Chastity Davis-Alphonse took the time to vote on Oct. 21. B.C’s general Election Day is Saturday, Oct. 24. (Chastity Davis-Alphonse Facebook photo)
B.C. reconciliation advocate encourages Indigenous women to vote in provincial election

Through the power of voice and education Chastity Davis-Alphonse is hopeful for change

White Rock RCMP Staff Sgt. Kale Pauls has released a report on mental health and policing in the city. (File photos)
White Rock’s top cop wants to bill local health authority for lengthy mental-health calls

‘Suggestion’ included in nine-page review calling for ‘robust’ support for healthcare-led response

A Le Chateau retail store is shown in Montreal on Wednesday July 13, 2016. Le Chateau Inc. says it is seeking court protection from creditors under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act to allow it to liquidate its assets and wind down its operations.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Clothing retailer Le Chateau plans to close its doors, files for CCAA protection

Le Chateau said it intends to remain fully operational as it liquidates its 123 stores

Green party Leader Sonia Furstenau arrives to announce her party’s election platform in New Westminster, B.C., on October 14, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. Green party says it’s raised nearly $835,000 in 38 days

NDP Leader John Horgan is holding his final virtual campaign event

U.S. border officers at the Peace Arch crossing arrested two men on California warrants this week. (File photo)
Ottawa predicts system delays, backlogs unless court extends life of refugee pact

Canada and the United States recognize each other as safe places to seek protection

BC Liberal leader Andrew Wilkinson,  BC NDP leader John Horgan and BC Green leader Sonia Furstenau. (File)
B.C. VOTES 2020: Climate change and sustainability promises from the parties

Snap election has led to a short campaign; here’s the lowdown on the platforms

Most Read