April 4, 2020

Kitchener city council changed zoning laws last week to allow up to three residential units per lot, according to the new bylaw.

These changes, set to break ground in 2020, will allow basement apartments, granny flats and tiny houses on most residential lots in the city.

This is a welcomed change for local residents amid the skyrocketing prices of housing over the years, said Kitchener City Coun. Debbie Chapman.

“I support the idea of tiny houses. While it will not solve the housing crisis we are currently experiencing in the Region, it will hopefully serve to house some people who have been priced out of the market by the luxury condo tsunami.”

Along with a hundreds of international students coming to the city each year, affordable housing is in demand for all, and Chapman believes that will be the biggest payoff from the bylaw change.

“It introduces another affordable housing option,” said Chapman. “I wouldn’t expect any immediate change as all new tiny houses require site plan reviews and permits.”

Modern day tiny homes are becoming more popular and some believe they are the way of the future.

Tiny homes or granny flats have everything a normal house would, including a kitchen, bathroom, bedroom and even a living room.

With costs of an average tiny home ranging from $30,000 to $50,000, it is almost a no brainer for those who don’t mind living a bit confined.

Kitchener Coun. Dave Schnider also loves the idea of tiny homes as the new law allows people to live in your own backyard.

 “We need affordable housing options and tiny houses provide that. They can also be put on existing properties. This is a great way for aging parents can live close to their children.”

As nice as it is for young adults to live on the same property as their parents, Schnider also believes these homes will also provide a great environment for older parents when their current home up keep begins to be too much to handle.

“Allowing tiny homes provides affordable options and also allows people to downsize and simplify their lifestyle. I think it’s a great option.”

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