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Affordable housing to be focus of Kitimat Chamber of Commerce meeting

Figures indicate the average Kitimat household needs to make more than $92,000 a year
On June 16 at 6 p.m., the Kitimat Chamber of Commerce will be hosting a public presentation and discussion with Happipad, a social enterprise, to talk about solutions for affordable housing Kitimat. (Happipad photo)

Affordable Housing will be the topic of a virtual meeting on June 16 hosted by the Kitimat Chamber of Commerce.

According to the District of Kitimat housing fact sheet, the average rental price for a two-bedroom unit averages at $2,276 per month, with a three-bedroom unit averaging at $2,735 a month. These figures indicate the average Kitimat household needs to make more than $92,000 a year to pay around 30 per cent of their income on basic shelter costs alone for a three-bedroom unit.

The affordable housing meeting on June 16 will have two presentations and is open to business owners and any individuals affected by housing challenges in Kitimat.

“We think you will find both sessions fascinating and informative,” the chamber stated. “Our goal is to make sure our members get the opportunity to hear first hand about the great things happening in our community and to learn about an innovative option when it comes to a potential affordable housing solution for Kitimat’s workforce. We know a lot of businesses trying to recruit new staff have this issue.”

Laurel D’Andrea, director of the Kitimat Chamber of Council, said there will also be a presentation by Happipad, a company that provides companion housing solutions for homeowners looking for tenants and tenants looking for rental units.

“It’s like Airbnb but long term, plus, it doesn’t have the same structure as the residential tenancy grants but there are still contracts that need to be signed. Also, they try and match you up with a like-minded individual. For example say if you are of Irish descent, [happipad] will try and find somebody in the community [you’re moving to] that is of Irish descent that may have a spare room that they want to rent out but on a more permanent basis,” D’andrea said.

“Or, say if someone was moving from Alberta, but they’ve never been away from home before and they don’t necessarily want to do dorm living but they also don’t want to live on their own, [Happipad] gives them the chance to still live roommate free and have the ability to have their own comfort zone, but still be sharing the space with someone with common interests.”

To take part or learn more about the program, contact Laurel D’Andrea at the Kitimat Chamber of Commerce.

The meeting time is 6 p.m.

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