Housing

Every family should have a safe and stable place to live.

Building affordable housing is good for families, breathes new life into our communities and strengthens our local economy.

  • The last time they were in government, Brian Pallister and his Conservatives refused to build any social housing at all. Because we believe in a Manitoba where nobody is left behind, our NDP government is investing over $137 million to develop 500 more social housing and 500 more affordable rental units on top of the 3,000 units that were completed last year.

  • We’re keeping life affordable for families with stronger rent protections, including protecting more renters from large rent increases and restricting condo conversions. Rent increase guidelines give families stability and we are committed to keeping them in place.

  • We are helping to keep homeownership affordable by providing families with up to $700 in education property tax relief every year. Seniors can now receive a rebate of up to $1,570—for many seniors, that effectively eliminates their school property tax.

We know there’s more work to do, but our NDP government is committed to building safe and affordable housing for every family who needs it.


Housing Stats and Facts

We need to support families living in poverty. We are committed to finding a solution that doesn’t create a poverty trap and helps both those on social assistance as well as the working poor.

But right now, the biggest threat for working families is Brian Pallister’s plan to cut $550 million from the provincial budget two years before it’s reasonably doable.

Just look at his record: when he was a cabinet minister in Manitoba’s last Conservative government, he cut social assistance by nearly $150 a month, clawed back the National Child Benefit from parents and refused to build any new affordable housing at all.

Now, his plan is the same: deep cuts to the services that are helping keep Manitoba families out of poverty.


Helping low-income families afford a stable place to live

Last year we announced a $20 million investment into our Rent Assist benefit program, which significantly increases housing supports for people on social assistance. Recipients can also take this benefit with them as they move from EIA into training or a good job.

Once fully implemented, Rent Assist will be 75% of median market rent—a key ingredient for EIA recipients as they transition into employment.

We are also investing a total of $402 million in Manitoba’s existing social housing stock. Our government renovated housing for almost 5,560 households in 2014/15 alone.

We also created Homeworks! to increase the supply of affordable housing in Manitoba. We’re doing this by supporting new rental housing, housing cooperatives, homeownership down payment assistance for homebuyers and rent supplements and renovation options for northern remote communities.

Mohinder Saran, Minister of Housing and Community Development, takes the first swing at the crumbling old Merchants Hotel. Our government is helping to redevelop it into the brand new Merchants Corner, a housing and education complex in the heart of downtown.

Adding more protections for renters

  • We introduced a tenant protection package with strong measures to control excessive rent increases and condo conversions.

  • We’ve introduced new rules that:

    • Limit how often landlords can apply for an exemption from rent regulation.

    • Require landlords to pay a tenant’s moving costs and additional expenses if renovations force the tenant from their home.

    • Establish a rent guideline formula based on the Consumer Price Index for Manitoba. This means there are now more transparent rules to limit how much landlords can increase tenants’ rent.

      • Under this formula, the 2016 rent guideline has been capped at 1.1% -- making Winnipeg’s rent among the lowest in Canada.

  • We have also given landlords incentives to encourage more pet-friendly units.

Keeping home ownership affordable

We have provided significant property tax relief over the past decade. According to Statistics Canada, Manitoba had the lowest increase in overall property taxes in Canada. They rose just 14% between 2000 and 2013.

By comparison, all other provinces saw much higher property tax increases in this same time period. Some examples include:

  • Alberta at 66%

  • Ontario at 47%

  • Saskatchewan at 31%

Working together

  • We announced grants available through the Live Downtown: Rental Development Program, which will support developers in the creation of up to 900 new units of mixed-income rental housing in downtown Winnipeg.

  • Our provincial government has cost-shared over $40 million dollars with the City of Winnipeg to provide for numerous private developer-led housing projects in downtown Winnipeg since 2010. This funding is committed to over 1,800 residential units with over 250 already complete.

  • We’re partnering with the private and non-profit sectors to stimulate more housing construction. Our housing tax credit gives developers who build rental housing with affordable units an 8% credit on their construction costs.

  • Working with private businesses, we are expanding housing to include 4,100 units across the province.

  • October 2015