B.C. Housing: Endemic

An inquiry into BC Housing and Rental markets since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic. Comparing pre and post Covid-19 market indicators, we highlight particular age group vulnerabilities accentuated by the pandemic. A contribution to the ongoing discussion of housing shortage in across BC, particularly in Vancouver. We also touch upon Senior Housing, and the role of financialization in Social Care.




Social Data Analytics


SDA 490


  • Edana Beauvais
  • and Pierre Mouganie

City of Vancouver:

  • Austin Lui

Student Team:

  • Saumi Rahnamay
  • Muhammad Usman
  • Salehin Haque (Sal)


  • Poverty Reduction Plan


With a particular focus on housing, we examine economic wellbeing across generations in BC. We found that since Covid-19 demand for housing has substantially increased, while supply continued to dwindle. Looking deeper into this increase in demand, we saw that first-time buyer activity decreased while investor activity syphoned what first-time buyers could not absorb. Based on age demographics, we know that investors are on average well into their fifties, while first-time buyers were in their mid-thirties. This sudden increase in demand and decrease in supply followed a sudden increase in housing price, making houses less affordable across BC. Furthermore, we discuss the rental market in BC, and discuss how the return from social distancing has panned out by looking at key characteristics of the market. To boot, we consider the historically debated effects of rent control on supply, and what it can tell us about the current rental market.

In the second section, we consider senior housing and the role of financialization and Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) in social care. We found that for-profit Long-Term Care homes in Ontario saw higher mortality rates, and worse overall conditions than non-profit senior homes during the pandemic. Our inquiry point to the corporate-owned companies’ ability to financially upkeep services and address staffing concerns is related to the management of outbreaks during times of health and economic crises.

The project is bookended by a discussion of the overall economic importance of housing. We describe economic trends associated with the health and activity of the housing market: where we see upwards trends and how these trends may conflict with our laudable goals of affordable housing for younger generations of British Columbians.

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