Provincial Housing Changes

Provincial Housing Changes

Provincial Housing

In 2023 the Province of BC enacted legislation to increase density and housing availability throughout municipalities in BC. The legislation is province-wide and the Town of Qualicum Beach is mandated to undertake a series of bylaw updates and policy reviews to meet the requirements.

The changes being implemented by the province are as follows:

  • Bill 35 - Short-Term Vacation Rentals (STVR)
  • These changes come into effect on May 1, 2024. Under Bill 35, property owners will not be permitted to operate a STVR unless the unit is their primary residence or in a secondary suite or an accessory dwelling unit (laneway home, garden home etc.) on the same property as the owner’s principal residence. The legislation establishes a new provincial role in regulating STVR while providing local governments with stronger enforcement tools. The primary goal of Bill 35 is to regulate short-term rentals, converting more units into long-term rentals. The Town's current zoning regulations do not support STVR operations except for Bed and Breakfast establishments. Recognizing the need for STVR to support the tourism industry in Qualicum Beach, Council will consider broadening the existing regulations to permit some primary residences as permissible STVRs.

  • Bill 44 & 46 - Small-Scale Multi-Unit Housing (SSMUH)
  • These changes come into effect on June 30, 2024, and require significant updates to the Town’s current zoning bylaws. While the changes will allow for infill housing on single-family and duplex parcels, the Town is working with policy tools to retain the character of Qualicum Beach neighbourhoods while still achieving the province’s housing objectives. The updated bylaws will be brought to Council in early May and will include changes to permitted density, maximum height, minimum setbacks, parking requirements, parcel coverage and other land use controls.

The following timelines are set by the Province for the Town to comply with:

  • Bill 35, 44 and 46 were given royal assent in November 2023.
  • The STVR legislation comes into effect for all municipalities on May 1, 2024.
  • The Bill 44 Housing Regulations requires the Town to update its zoning bylaws prior to June 30, 2024.

Stay up-to-date as the new regulations are implemented by signing up for the Province's email notification here

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