Will a construction labour shortage cement Canada's fate?

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Widespread inflation and supply chain issues have plagued Canada’s building industry since the start of the pandemic. Now a construction labour shortage threatens to slow down development further.

According to the most recent available data from Statistics Canada, investment in single-family construction has remained constant at $8.6 billion between February and July. However, these funds don’t appear to be enough to meet the increased demand for affordable housing.

Canada needs to build 3.5 million new homes by 2030 to achieve nationwide affordability, as estimated by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation. Currently, only 200,000 to 300,000 new units are added on average each year.

The construction slowdown is not for lack of trying – the cost of construction materials like ready-mix concrete, clay, paint and steel surged at the beginning of 2020 and have stayed sky-high since. Lumber prices are finally falling, but overall inflation and supply chain bottlenecks have forced some contractors to pause or even cancel projects.

A looming construction labour shortage is making the issue worse. Data from Statistics Canada shows there were nearly 90,000 job vacancies in the industry in Q2 2022. BuildForce Canada forecasts 156,000 aging contractors will retire over the next five years.

Winner takes all

The growing gap between housing supply and demand is likely to push rents even higher. As scarce rental properties climb in value, smaller investors could also be priced out of the market, leading to fiercer competition among property managers to sign a smaller number of higher-value landlords.

The property managers who do well in this ultra-competitive rental market will be the ones who craft their marketing pitches carefully and provide premium service – and PayProp can be the ace up your sleeve.

Landlords love PayProp. They love that their money is ring-fenced and protected by bank-grade security, so their money never goes to the wrong person. They love the real-time oversight they get when property managers invite them to the PayProp Owner app. Most of all, they love getting paid the same day the rent is received – no matter how the tenant chooses to pay.

And with the time you save with our real-time rental payment reconciliation and automated statements and invoices, you can get a leg up on the competition and boost client retention with fast, responsive service.

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