I am still trying to figure out why we are trying to legalize secondary suites. I have heard it is a way to help young families live here.
I have a young family, three kids ages four, six and eight and census statistics show a large proportion of Oak Bay’s population are currently young families.
My family keeps me very busy in the community; I am at the parks, recreation centres and schools daily. There seems to be no shortage of young families here.
I discuss this issue with other parents and do not hear them expressing a need for help through the legalization of secondary suites.
Quite the contrary, in fact. Most parents with young children I talk to have put down roots in Oak Bay because of the liveability here. In my opinion that comes, in part, from the low density and carefully planned population growth. That is the reason we bought here.
Most of us with young families have passed up the opportunity to own a much larger or newer home in a less liveable neighbourhood in exchange for the unique lifestyle of Oak Bay, where we don’t have the abuses of a city.
Survey results from the report on secondary suites published last year show that 83 per cent of Oak Bay residents would want assurances that the owner lives in the house with a secondary suite. There is no current system or legislation that can enforce this provision.
It seems we have a solution and are looking for a problem. Unfortunately, this solution has the potential to be extremely detrimental to the very place young families find so desirable, as it’s such a healthy place to bring up kids.