Final Report Finds Over 170,000 Households Waiting for Affordable Housing

Facing changing social housing environment, ONPHA ends report series on rent-geared-to-income housing assistance in Ontario

TORONTO, May 25, 2016 /CNW/ - The Ontario Non-Profit Housing Association (ONPHA) has released its annual report on the number of households waiting for rent-geared-to-income (RGI) housing in Ontario. This is the final report in the series. Since 2003, the widely-cited reports have gathered data on the growing demand for affordable housing in Ontario.

Demand for RGI housing has increased significantly in the last decade and, at the same time, housing policies and programs have also changed. RGI housing is no longer the only form of housing assistance available and local governments are implementing new and innovative programs. These locally-responsive initiatives reflect community need, but prevent cross-jurisdictional comparisons.

"As the world of housing assistance evolves, municipal and regional governments are finding new and unique ways to address housing need in their communities," said ONPHA Executive Director, Sharad Kerur. "But Ontario communities are very different and truly responsive programs won't be easily compared. There's a risk that you'll compare apples to oranges."

"The federal government has committed to create a National Housing Strategy, which must include dedicated funding for the growth and sustainability of the non-profit housing sector," explained Kerur. "Housing policies and programs are changing, but the need for all levels of government to come together and ensure that Ontarians have access to safe and secure places to call home remains the same."

ONPHA will continue to conduct research on housing trends and advocate for investment in affordable housing by all levels of government.

Highlights from the 2016 Waiting Lists Survey Report include:

  • The number of households waiting for RGI housing in Ontario has risen by over 45,000 in a little over a decade, reaching a new high of 171,360 households in 2015
  • The number has risen by 2,649 since our last report in 2015
  • The proportion of senior applicants has increased from 22 per cent to 32 per cent since 2003
  • Provincially, applicants now face an average wait time of nearly four years, though waits are much longer in high-demand urban areas
  • In the City of Toronto, where over 80,000 households are currently waiting, applicants can expect an average wait of 8.4 years


The full report is available at

ONPHA is home to more than 700 non-profit housing providers. From Windsor to Cornwall, Toronto to Thunder Bay, our members house more than 400,000 people in 163,000 homes across 220 Ontario communities. They are a critical part of the fabric of every community and provide decent, affordable homes to low and moderate income households. Many of our members provide specialized housing and support services for Ontarians who need help to enjoy a successful tenancy.

SOURCE Ontario Non-Profit Housing Association (ONPHA)

Image with caption: "Ontario Non-Profit Housing Association (CNW Group/Ontario Non-Profit Housing Association (ONPHA))". Image available at:

For further information: Media contact: Sharad Kerur, Executive Director, ONPHA, 416-927-9144 ext. 102 (office), 416-723-2835 (cell),


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Ontario Non-Profit Housing Association (ONPHA)

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