Laneway Homes and Why They're Vancouver's Latest Housing Trend

Laneway house construction has increased in Canada, particularly in Vancouver, which is the most expensive real estate market in the country.


Laneway homes are also called “coach houses,” “granny flats,” “Fonzie suites,” and “carriage houses.” They’re fairly small houses constructed in a laneway or a backyard of existing single-family properties as home additions.

This type of housing is now becoming a trend in Vancouver. But why are laneway houses most sought in the city?

Below are the reasons why laneway homes are the latest housing trend in Vancouver, Canada.

Affordable Housing

Builders, like Goldcon Construction, say that laneway house construction has increased in Canada, particularly in Vancouver, which is the most expensive real estate market in the country.

Because of economic hardships, prices of real estate increase in 2008, making owning a dream home less possible for many families. That's why laneway homes were found to be great solutions to growing families.

Practical Housing Solution

Today, most families prefer to stay in one compound or residence because they can't afford to buy a new property, making homes multi-generational. With multi-generational renovations growing fast in Canada, reports show that the number of households with multi-generations, or at least three generations, living in one home increased between 2001 and 2016 by more than 37%.

The laneway housing trend is apparent in Vancouver because there were more than 700 permits given for laneway homes in 2018, which represent secondary dwellings in multi-generational properties. In recent years, homes for sale in the city have become more expensive. Based on the Real Estate Board of Vancouver, the price for an attached home is about $1.4 million.

That's why laneway housing is a practical solution to separate from every household without having to leave the residential property. Simply build a tiny home like what you do in home addition and increase the wall height of your existing property to create a laneway home.

Contribute to Sustainability

Laneway houses contribute to the city's total sustainability, offering people more chances to live close to the place of work and entertainment at the same time.

It's a good idea to make your laneway home a long-term income-generating asset while helping college students, foreign nationals, or even Canadians who want to work in Vancouver find a comfortable and safe place to stay.

Source of Additional Income

Since more people are heading to Vancouver to work and tour, residents find laneway house rental as a great source of additional income. It's an excellent way to gain extra money to pay the bills, put children in good schools, invest for retirement, or buy a new car.

Also, you can rent out your laneway home and get extra money to pay your mortgage. But of course, you need to think about its tax implications. You cannot put a laneway house to rent as a short-term or overnight rental property in Vancouver. Laneway home owners are encouraged to find long-term renters to help reduce the severe rental shortage in the city.

Again, laneway homes represent a great opportunity for homeowners to make an extra income. So, it's a good idea to meet your tax advisor before deciding to become a landlord to ensure that you thoroughly understand the tax implications.

An Asset To One’s Property

Property values are increasing, and having a laneway house is a worthwhile investment for your property. It generates rental income opportunities to future homeowners, which provide added value to your property.

If ever you have plans to sell your property in the future, having a laneway home attracts more buyers. But of course, you have to remember that capital tax gains also apply. Nevertheless, it's a good idea to have something valuable and reasonable investment you can benefit from in the future.

Great Place to Welcome Guests

There's always a space problem every time relatives, friends, and guests come to visit and sleepover. But, you don't have to worry about not having a comfortable space for everyone if you have a laneway house.

If you're planning to have a house party for your children's friends, having an extra living space is perfect for nannies and caretakers, too. Also, if you have elderly family members who have their private caregivers or nurses, they can use the laneway home to rest or stay for the long-term to take good care of your parents or grandparents.


If you're planning to renovate your home soon, it's a smart move to consider constructing a laneway home. You won't only have extra space to welcome relatives and guests, but also have an income-generating source to sustain your family's needs.

Also, laneway homes are trending because they contribute to Vancouver's sustainability and economic growth.



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