Policy makers and communities across Canada have been increasingly concerned with the impacts of short-term rentals (STRs) on housing supply and affordability. This project will provide the first systematic, evidence-based assessment of this issue.
Using a combination of big-data analysis of McGill’s unique STR dataset and policy analysis, we will answer the following three questions:
- How many housing units have been converted to dedicated STRs across Canada? How can the impacts of these conversions be quantified with respect to local housing metrics?
- How many STRs are operating in compliance with the relevant local or provincial laws? Put differently, how many dedicated STRs could be returned to the long-term housing market through better enforcement of existing regulations?
- What can the COVID-19 pandemic’s extreme shock to STR demand tell us about the longer-term relationship between STRs and long-term housing in Canada?
Results will be communicated through a public report, a set of policy briefs, and targeted outreach to policymakers across the country.
The project is envisaged primarily as a collaboration between McGill University and Fairbnb Canada, but we hope that other participants in the BSH node will be able to contribute, particularly in the areas of housing market modeling, tenant impacts, and knowledge mobilization.