For many, empty or under-used homes are tangible proof of the commodification, or financialization, of housing. There are those who will argue that an increased supply is necessary to subdue the market, to remove the pressure of scarcity. However, housing markets in what Mr. Yan calls "hedge cities," such as Vancouver, are fuelled by an unprecedented wealth coming from outside. Without addressing the speculative nature of the market, how much effect will supply have?
Simply looking at the contrast pictures of downtown Vancouver at the top of this post is visual proof that increasing supply did nothing to resolve affordability by addressing scarcity.
The reality is that the 'supply' argument is a political wedge to leverage municipal politicians into rezoning neighbourhoods so developers can destroy single family homes in favour of condo stock to fuel and profit from the foreign speculative demand.
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