Tuesday, March 26, 2024

City of Prince Rupert highlights opportunities to add a secondary suite to your home

The City of Prince Rupert is looking to address sone of the
housing shortage in the community through the creation of
secondary suites in existing housing stock

(image from City of PR)

As part of their work on creating additional housing spaces in Prince Rupert,  City Hall has outlined some of the changes in Provincial legislation that now make it easier than ever to convert some of the space in your home into a revenue generating rental space.

Among the highlights of the provincial program are:

Homeowners who qualify will receive up to 50% of the cost of renovations, up to a maximum of $40,000. The program will provide a rebate in the form of a forgivable loan—a loan that does not need to be repaid if the homeowner follows the terms of the program. 

For the loan to be forgiven, the new unit must be located on the same property where the homeowner lives and must be rented out at below market rates, set by BC Housing, for at least five years.

Details on the provincial program through BC Housing can be reviewed here.

The City shares the measures now in place through their social media stream today, noting of some of the changes that City Council has also adopted towards reducing the challenges towards development of the suites.

We've updated our regulations so that a significantly higher number of properties can now put in a suite as a mortgage helper or to accommodate and support family.  

Secondary suites are a great way for our community to create additional housing with minimal impact on the character of local neighbourhoods, and also increases the affordability of housing for people looking to buy-in to the housing market. 

Plus, until December 31st, 2024, City Council has waived fees for residential rezoning, development permit and building permit applications that result in new housing units. 

Secondary suites are permitted in all residential zones, assuming you can meet the requirements below. If requirements cannot be met, applicants can apply for a variance for Council to consider varying regulations in special circumstances.

While it's easier than before to make the required changes to your home to add rental income, there are still some city rules to follow for those looking into the prospects of adding a secondary suite to the property. 

You can explore the City's notes towards the secondary suite program here.

A wider overview of Civic housing initiatives is available here

A look at housing themes in Prince Rupert can be found through our archive page.

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