What is Affordability?

Affordability generally refers to housing (rental or ownership) that costs no more than 30% of before-tax household income. A Regional Housing Needs Assessment conducted in 2014 found that the Cowichan Valley Regional District has a significant need for housing for youth, low-income families, seniors, and people with disabilities.

The Canadian Rental Housing Index is a tool created by housing organizations across the country to assess rental housing by affordability, overspending, income gap, overcrowding and bedroom shortfall. The Index provides strong evidence of the need to improve rental options in North Cowichan:

  • About 22% of all households in North Cowichan are rental units
  • The average renter household income in North Cowichan is $25,115
  • 58% of renter households in North Cowichan spend more than 30% of their income on rent (52% in the CVRD)
  • North Cowichan's rental affordability is ranked as "severe" 
  • North Cowichan's rental affordability is ranked as 474 out of 521 Municipalities across Canada