The small house movement may be coming to a neighbourhood near you, proving that “bigger is better” is not necessarily true. Having a bigger space to fill, a bigger mortgage to pay, and a smaller disposable income make having a large home unrealistic for many young professionals and families.
In an article in homify.ca, the Canadian Home Builders’ Association suggests that Canadian homes have long been among the world’s largest, at 2,300 sq. feet (213.68 sq. meter) on average. And this hasn’t changed. In the same article, a 2017 report from consultant PwC suggests homes in Canada are the third largest in the world. However, rising prices, dwindling space and an influx of immigration may make room for the small housing movement to gain a foothold in Canada.
As the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) states: “ Home prices have risen ahead of economic fundamentals such as personal disposable income and population growth, resulting in overvaluation in many Canadian housing markets.” In fact, cities such as Toronto and Vancouver have already witnessed the small housing phenomenon as limited space and affordability have forced developers to think small. Paul Kealey, co-owner of EkoBuilt, near Ottawa, told The Ottawa Citizen that there are many positives to the small housing movement, as the houses are “cheaper to build and operate, less expensive to maintain and repair.” That also may mean lower taxes. Sounds like the small housing movement is on the verge of packing a big punch in housing markets across Canada.