Rethinking the "foreignness" of owners living abroad

Comparing CHSP and SVT data we try to tease out how foreign our forein owners really are.

Jens von Bergmann Nathan Lauster

10 minute read

(Joint with Nathan Lauster and cross-posted at HomeFreeSociology) TLDR: Combining our two major sources of data on the “foreignness” of property owners suggests at least half of those owning property in high demand parts of BC but living outside of Canada are Canadian citizens or permanent residents. How Foreign Are You? BC housing discussions have often focused on various aspects of “foreignness” – foreign buyers, foreign owners, non-resident owners, foreign capital, home owners with non-anglicized last names, out of province buyers, buyers on 10-year entry program, foreign landlords – the list goes on in bewildering variety, and each category comes with it’s own range of interpretations and definitions.

Capital Gains Income

Income concepts in Canada generally only include regular income and in particular miss (taxable) capital gains. But capital gains makes up an important income source and we should pay more attention to it.

Jens von Bergmann

7 minute read

We have previously look at T1FF tax data which is an extremely rich annual administrative data source. The cansim tables have a range of variables to inform about incomes of individuals, families (sliced by number of children, including zero children), low income statistics, and just statistics about the number of taxfilers and dependants by age. It’s available on cansim for Canada overall, the provinces and CMAs/CAs. That’s great, but sometimes it’s nice to have finer geographic detail.

Vancouver's pandemic weather

The weather during the 2020 pandemic, especially the fall and winter, has felt worse than usual. How much of that is just perception and how much is real?

Jens von Bergmann

4 minute read

The pandemic changed our lives and behaviours. And our perceptions of things. With physical distancing, various degrees of restrictions and people avoiding the 3Cs: crowded places, close-contact settins, confined and enclosed spaces, people have been focusing on spending time outdoors whenever possible. I certainly pay a lot more attention to the weather than I used to, and Vancouver’s fall and winter has felt especially miserable so far. But has the weather actually been worse or is it just my warped perception?

Keeping the Leavers

Some people have a hard time making room for newcomers, but how about making room for people to stay?

Jens von Bergmann Nathan Lauster

6 minute read

(Joint with Nathan Lauster and cross-posted at HomeFreeSociology) Do people select cities from diverse alternatives? Or do cities select residents from diverse flows of people? The answer is pretty much: both. People can look around and consider where they want to end up. And cities, through municipal policies, can and do work to select their residents. EXCEPT cities can’t do this directly. At least across North America, cities generally aren’t allowed to establish and maintain their own immigration policies.

Projections and self-fulfilling prophecies

Housing and population growth are endogenous in high-demand areas. Which gives cities the tools to exclude people, but should they? Deciding how to grow is a values question, not a technocratic one.

Jens von Bergmann Nathan Lauster

13 minute read

(Joint with Nathan Lauster and cross-posted at HomeFreeSociology) When people want to live in your city, how many should you let in? On the one hand, this is a moral question. Do you have an obligation to people who don’t already live here? On the other hand, it’s a moot question. At least in Canada, cities don’t have the power to control migration. BUT WAIT! Cities DO have power over how many new dwellings to allow.