Budget 2024 reaction blog_header

A Solid Step Towards Solving the Housing Crisis: CHRA’s Response to Canada’s New Housing Plan and Budget 2024

25 Apr 2024

CHRA staff


Up until the 1990s, Canada invested in growing non-profit, co-operative, and public housing. After subsequent decades of declining government investment, Canada finds itself in a housing crisis that is impacting affordability and access to housing for households across Canada.

Millions of Canadian households need housing at a more affordable cost than the market can provide – they need community housing.

According to our November 2023 economic study developed by Deloitte, increasing community housing supply by a meagre 1.5% can boost economic productivity by 5.7% to 9.3% and increase GDP by $67 billion to $136 billion annually. The boost to Canada’s productivity that can be unlocked with increased investment in community housing benefits everyone – whether they need community housing or not.

In other words, bold policy action to increase Canada’s supply of community housing can address the housing crisis, alleviate the affordability crisis, and increase the standard of living of everyone in Canada.

On April 16th, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Chrystia Freeland tabled the 2024 federal budget, featuring the measures announced as part of Canada's (new) Housing Plan.

CHRA has been working hard on your behalf to advocate for policies and programs with a goal of more than doubling Canada’s supply of non-market community housing.

We were pleased to see that Budget 2024 featured measures that CHRA has advocated for: a “Team Canada” approach, with increased access to funding, financing, and government land to create community housing, a national rental protection fund, as well as additional measures to increase community housing supply.

While CHRA is pleased with the housing measures included in Budget 2024, we have spoken to our government contacts about the importance that the federal government must place on ensuring continuous investment in housing for Indigenous peoples living in urban, rural, and northern areas beyond the $4.3 billion invested in Budgets 2022 and 2023.

Here’s what we’re most excited about in Canada’s Housing Plan:

  1. Boosting Affordable Housing: The government is allocating an additional $1 billion (primarily comprised of grants) to the Affordable Housing Fund’s (AHF) rapid housing stream. CHRA has been advocating for dedicated funding targeted at creating supportive housing. We have welcomed the new AHF rapid housing stream while requesting clarity and specificity in the allocation of funds for the program, particularly the amount of grant (non-repayable) dollars available.
  2. Protecting Rental Affordability: The federal government is introducing a $1.5 billion Canada Rental Protection Fund to help community housing providers secure affordable rental units that are at risk of being sold to investors, ensuring long-term affordability. CHRA and its partners under the Canadian Housing Acquisition Fund (Canadian Housing AF) are advocating for the government to work with us to implement this important initiative.
  3. Unlocking Public Land: Through the Public Lands for Homes plan, the government is unlocking underused public land for housing, accelerating availability, and creating a mapping tool to track potential sites. As part of this plan, the federal government intends to create a Public Lands Acquisition Fund to purchase land from other orders of government, expanding the Federal Lands Initiative, and whenever possible, transferring land from the federal government to the Canada Lands Company for $1 to support more affordable housing development. CHRA is encouraging all levels of government to prioritize non-market community housing on all public lands.
  4. Collaborative Building Efforts: The government is introducing Canada Builds to amplify the impact of federal funding by partnering with provinces and territories with ambitious housing plans. CHRA is encouraging the federal government to require provinces and municipalities to prioritize non-market community housing and set targets to increase the proportion of non-market housing in their jurisdictions.

CHRA has been in touch with our government contacts to express the importance of ongoing collaboration with the community housing sector in rolling out the housing measures in Budget 2024. We will continue to push for the resources you need to ensure everyone has a safe and affordable place to call home.

Want to read more about CHRA advocacy and the measures in Budget 2024? Check out our response to Canada’s new housing plan, visit our Advocacy page, and read our economic study on community housing and productivity.