This summer, Canadian housing minister Sean Fraser blamed Canada’s housing crisis, in part, on post-secondary institutions bringing in unregulated and record-high numbers of international students. This could cause the rental market to skyrocket in urban areas; on the flip side, the number of newcomer students has also created a swell of illegal rooming houses, even fostering homelessness among international students, who lack credit checks and Canadian references to find housing in the first place.
Fraser is not alone in pinpointing non-Canadians in this debate. Ontario Premier Doug Ford has repeatedly called out the rising number of newcomers for his province’s housing crisis, using it as justification for his (now scandal-ridden) Greenbelt land swap plan, whose entire purpose was to help build 500,000 new homes by 2025. And in the broader public eye, Nanos conducted a recent poll for CTV News on the subject, finding that roughly three in five Canadians support decreasing the number of immigrants coming into the country until housing becomes more affordable.
A rising fears of immigrants, rootless cosmopolitans and foreign influences undermining Canadian livelihoods have not historically been good for the Jews. But there could be some Jewish players who help solve the puzzle. Today on The CJN Daily, producer Zac Kauffman speaks with Noam Dolgin, who co-founded CoHo BC, which “hacks” the housing market by matchmaking strangers to pool their money to buy a home. He explains how this kind of unorthodox thinking could be one key piece in solving the country’s housing crisis.
The CJN Daily is written and hosted by Ellin Bessner (@ebessner on Twitter). Zachary Kauffman is the producer. Michael Fraiman is the executive producer. Our intern is Ashok Lamichhane, and our theme music by Dov Beck-Levine. Our title sponsor is Metropia. We’re a member of The CJN Podcast Network. To subscribe to this podcast, please watch this video. Donate to The CJN and receive a charitable tax receipt by clicking here.