There are faster and better ways to generate revenue for Toronto Community Housing's repair backlog than selling its single-family homes, says a report from the Special Housing Working Group, following six months of independent review and consultations with more than 600 individuals and organizations.
Putting People First - Transforming Toronto Community Housing was released Sept. 17 and has been adopted by Toronto City Council.
The consultations Working Group, chaired by Councillor Ana Bailão, were endorsed was appointed by Toronto City Council in March 2012 to investigate alternatives to the sale of 619 occupied TCH single- family homes. Council also requested advice on innovative financial strategies to fund the social housing repair backlog and a strategy to engage the federal and provincial governments in providing long-term, sustainable funding to meet Toronto's affordable housing needs.
Since the report's release, the City of Toronto and Toronto Community Housing have been exploring and implementing its recommendations. More than $156 million in new revenue has been generated for social housing repairs and there's more to come. The City recently approved a 10-year financing plan which will provide $864 million or one-third of $2.6 billion in new repair requirements.
The City and TCH have also launched the Close the Housing Gap campaign to persuade the federal and provincial governments to also pay one-third each.
A market sounding report for potential funding opportunities such as real estate investment trusts, has also been completed and will serve as a useful guide for the future.
Putting People First-Transforming Toronto Community Housing