34 - Addressing the housing affordability crisis with impact investing


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Access to safe and affordable housing is absolutely essential to meeting humanity's most basic needs. Housing not only protects us from the elements but provides security and stability that's so important to our physical, emotional, and mental health. Yet even in the world's most developed markets, housing affordability is approaching crisis levels.

For nearly 40 years now - with the exception of a few dramatic market corrections (e.g. in the early 1980s and 2008) - housing prices have soared, far exceeding the asset class's long-term expected returns. For instance, according to The S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller 20-City Composite Home Price NSA Index, real estate has doubled since 1980. Meanwhile, in Canada, home prices have nearly quadrupled over the same period. The problem is particularly acute in cities like Toronto, Munich, Hong Kong, Frankfurt, Amsterdam, Vancouver, Paris, and Zurich which all top the charts of the UBS Global Real Estate Bubble Index 2020.

As the global pandemic has taken hold, housing prices have only continued to surge in many markets across the globe, furthering the already staggering wealth gap between the rich and poor. Today's guests Garth Davis and Andy Broderick are Managing Partners at New Market Funds based in Vancouver, British Columbia, where they structure high-impact investments that provide affordable housing in vulnerable communities across Canada.

During the episode Garth, Andy, and I discuss just how bad housing affordability is getting, some of the additional barriers vulnerable communities face in accessing affordable housing, the economics of affordable housing, the importance of community-based non-profit partners, and the various ways New Market Funds is tackling the problem. And be sure to stay tuned to the very end when Andy and Garth discuss the opportunities and challenges for the industry over the next decade.

Resources from this episode:

New Market Funds line up:

*** Enter to win a $500 impact investing prize-pack! Entry is free. The deadline is Sept 4th, 2021. Visit www.davidoleary.ca/giveaway to enter!

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