In the next few years, Morden could have another 60 affordable housing units for people living with a low income.
Anhart Homes Manitoba is the most recent extension of Anhart Community Housing, a non-profit society dedicated to preventing homelessness. They are planning to expand their efforts into the region after seeing the high demand for housing.
"First of all, there's a need. 0.8 percent is a very very low vacancy rate, so Morden needs affordable housing," says Property Acquisition Consultant, Charlie Macleod.
Anhart has already secured land on the northwest side of Morden at 843 and 847 Thornhill Street, which totals 50,000 sq. ft.
Macleod says they work with impact investments and are looking for $310,000 by mid-March so they can break ground in roughly a year and a half. "It's essentially a socially conscious investment . . . people park their money with us and just let us use it to do these projects. They get it all back, and they even get a little zero to three percent on top of that."
Although the return on the investment is a nice perk, he says the true value comes with investing money into people's lives. "The point is they're investing in the community, and they get a better community. It elevates Morden, it elevates the municipality."
After receiving investments they can apply for the rest of the funding through the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, and then start building. They hope to build 10 studio apartments, 20 one-bedrooms, 25 two-bedrooms, and 5 three-bedrooms.
As well, they plan to partner with members of the community from the beginning to the end of the project. Macleod says the city and municipality have already been working hard with bringing members into the workforce.
When asked why Anhart is expanding into Morden, Macleod says there were a few key factors that helped them decide.
"We saw the programming happening at the municipal level, bringing in skilled workers that the community needs in order to prosper economically, [and] that got us very very excited," he says.
The founder, Keith Gordon Wiebe also has some family ties to Manitoba. "This is the ancestral home of the founder of the organization, and his brother lived here for six years. There's tonnes of family in Winnipeg so they're close by, so it just seemed like the right fit."