Recent Immigrants in Metropolitan Areas: Toronto—A Comparative Profile Based on the 2001 Census

Part F: Housing

Crowded accommodations more common for recent immigrants

In Toronto, the number of persons per room among households of recent immigrants is well above the overall average. As many as 27% of recent immigrant households live in crowded conditions (that is, there are more persons than rooms in the home). The incidence of crowding is even higher among households consisting only of very recent immigrants. By contrast, crowding is very rare among households of the Canadian-born and earlier immigrants.

Table F-1: Immigrant households (by period of immigration) and Canadian-born households—persons per room, Toronto Census Metropolitan Area, 2001 (number and percentage distribution)
Households Fewer than 0.5 persons 0.5 to 0.74 persons 0.75 to 0.99 persons 1 or more persons Total
Canadian-born 444,300 174,750 22,510 19,280 660,820
Earlier immigrants 314,680 160,930 30,570 25,540 531,710
Recent immigrants 101,470 146,320 64,090 117,130 429,010
 1986-1995 immigrants 71,380 93,570 36,800 55,130 256,890
 1996-2001 immigrants with others 12,410 27,490 14,100 29,200 83,200
 1996-2001 immigrants only 17,680 25,270 13,190 32,800 88,930
All households 864,910 485,720 118,500 165,640 1,634,760
 
Canadian-born 67% 26% 3% 3% 100%
Earlier immigrants 59% 30% 6% 5% 100%
Recent immigrants 24% 34% 15% 27% 100%
 1986-1995 immigrants 28% 36% 14% 21% 100%
 1996-2001 immigrants with others 15% 33% 17% 35% 100%
 1996-2001 immigrants only 20% 28% 15% 37% 100%
All households 53% 30% 7% 10% 100%

Note: The total “All households” includes households of non-permanent residents not shown in the table. For definitions of household, crowding and related concepts, see the Glossary.

Large households likely to have crowded accommodations

Crowding is related to size of household. The larger the household, the greater the chance that there are more persons than rooms in the dwelling. This pattern is found among households of the Canadian-born as well as immigrants, despite the fact that there is much less crowding in households of the Canadian-born than in households of recent immigrants.

As shown earlier, households of immigrants who landed before 1986 are similar to the households of the Canadian-born in size. They also have accommodations that are similar in size to that of the Canadian-born.

Table F-2: Immigrant households (by period of immigration) and Canadian-born households—persons per room, by size of household, Toronto Census Metropolitan Area, 2001 (number and percentage distribution)
Type of household Fewer than 0.5 persons 0.5 to 0.74 persons 0.75 to 0.99 persons 1 or more persons Total
1 to 3 persons
Canadian-born 399,590 89,590 7,230 11,750 508,150
Earlier immigrants 275,760 66,910 7,050 10,300 360,010
Recent immigrants 86,270 76,480 21,660 33,310 217,740
 1986-1995 immigrants 60,020 44,270 10,510 14,480 129,280
 1996-2001 immigrants with others 10,170 15,140 4,460 6,300 36,060
 1996-2001 immigrants only 16,100 17,070 6,690 12,540 52,410
4 to 5 persons
Canadian-born 43,800 79,630 11,300 5,200 139,910
Earlier immigrants 37,970 85,770 15,300 9,670 148,680
Recent immigrants 14,630 62,140 29,410 54,620 160,780
 1986-1995 immigrants 10,970 44,540 18,540 27,130 101,200
 1996-2001 immigrants with others 2,110 9,800 5,270 10,780 27,950
 1996-2001 immigrants only 1,550 7,800 5,610 16,710 31,650
6 or more persons
Canadian-born 920 5,530 4,000 2,330 12,760
Earlier immigrants 960 8,260 8,220 5,590 23,030
Recent immigrants 570 7,700 13,020 29,200 50,500
 1986-1995 immigrants 390 4,760 7,760 13,520 26,420
 1996-2001 immigrants with others 130 2,550 4,380 12,130 19,200
 1996-2001 immigrants only 40 390 900 3,560 4,880
 
1 to 3 persons
Canadian-born 79% 18% 1% 2% 100%
Earlier immigrants 77% 19% 2% 3% 100%
Recent immigrants 40% 35% 10% 15% 100%
 1986-1995 immigrants 46% 34% 8% 11% 100%
 1996-2001 immigrants with others 28% 42% 12% 17% 100%
 1996-2001 immigrants only 31% 33% 13% 24% 100%
4 to 5 persons
Canadian-born 31% 57% 8% 4% 100%
Earlier immigrants 26% 58% 10% 7% 100%
Recent immigrants 9% 39% 18% 34% 100%
 1986-1995 immigrants 11% 44% 18% 27% 100%
 1996-2001 immigrants with others 8% 35% 19% 39% 100%
 1996-2001 immigrants only 5% 25% 18% 53% 100%
6 or more persons
Canadian-born 7% 43% 31% 18% 100%
Earlier immigrants 4% 36% 36% 24% 100%
Recent immigrants 1% 15% 26% 58% 100%
 1986-1995 immigrants 1% 18% 29% 51% 100%
 1996-2001 immigrants with others 1% 13% 23% 63% 100%
 1996-2001 immigrants only 1% 8% 18% 73% 100%

Note: The total “All households” includes households of non-permanent residents not shown in the table. For definitions of household, crowding and related concepts, see the Glossary.

More than one-third of recent immigrant households face high housing cost

More than one-third of recent immigrant households spend more than 30% of their income on accommodations, and for 16% of these households the cost of accommodations exceeds 50% of income. Households consisting exclusively of very recent immigrants are even more likely to have a high housing cost, with one-half spending 30% or more of their income on housing. Of Canadian-born households, only one in four have housing costs in excess of 30% of income.

Table F-3: Immigrant households (by period of immigration) and Canadian-born households—cost of accommodations as a share of household income, Toronto Census Metropolitan Area, 2000 (number and percentage distribution)
  Cost of accommodation
Households Less than 30% 30% to 50% 50% or more
Canadian-born 493,210 75% 99,710 15% 66,150 10%
Earlier immigrants 402,420 76% 78,430 15% 50,120 9%
Recent immigrants 241,650 64% 73,480 20% 59,600 16%
 1986-1995 immigrants 170,080 66% 49,170 19% 37,370 15%
 1996-1999 immigrants with others 38,140 72% 9,010 17% 5,910 11%
 1996-1999 immigrants only 33,430 51% 15,290 23% 16,320 25%
All households 1,165,160 71% 263,640 16% 197,190 12%

Note: The total “All households” includes households of non-permanent residents not shown in the table. For definitions of household and related concepts, see the Glossary. Totals do not add to 100% due to some non-reporting households.

Housing costs of more than 30% of income are considered burdensome, and households facing that level of cost generally have low incomes. Many households of recently landed immigrants have low incomes and try to keep the cost of accommodations down by choosing small quarters and making their households large. But often this is not enough to bring housing costs down to less than 30% of income.

Housing of very recent immigrants in similar state of repair

The dwellings of households of immigrants who landed after 1985 have been more recently built than the houses of Canadian-born.

Table F-4: Immigrant households (by period of immigration) and Canadian-born households—period of construction of household dwelling, Toronto Census Metropolitan Area, 2001 (number and percentage distribution)
  Period of construction
Households Before 1971 1971-1990 1991-2001
Canadian-born 350,580 53% 217,620 33% 92,630 14%
Earlier immigrants 243,100 46% 213,560 40% 75,060 14%
Recent immigrants 165,320 39% 180,670 42% 83,040 19%
 1986-1995 immigrants 95,380 37% 107,550 42% 53,950 21%
 1996-2001 immigrants with others 33,330 40% 34,730 42% 15,140 18%
 1996-2001 immigrants only 36,580 41% 38,400 43% 13,960 16%
All households 765,460 47% 616,670 38% 252,640 15%

Note: The total “All households” includes households of non-permanent residents not shown in the table. For definitions of household and related concepts, see the Glossary.

The state of repair of the housing stock for both recent immigrants and earlier immigrants is nearly identical to that of Canadian-born. This suggests that, although crowding and the cost of housing clearly are challenges for many recent immigrants, they tend not to resort to sub-standard accommodations.

Table F-5: Immigrant households (by period of immigration) and Canadian-born households—quality of housing, Toronto Census Metropolitan Area, 2001 (number and percentage distribution)
  Quality of housing
Households Regular maintenance Minor repairs Major repairs
Canadian-born 443,210 67% 168,480 25% 49,130 7%
Earlier immigrants 370,830 70% 127,390 24% 33,490 6%
Recent immigrants 292,580 68% 104,060 24% 32,380 8%
 1986-1995 immigrants 173,650 68% 63,530 25% 19,710 8%
 1996-2001 immigrants with others 56,730 68% 20,170 24% 6,300 8%
 1996-2001 immigrants only 62,210 70% 20,350 23% 6,380 7%
All households 1,116,110 68% 402,770 25% 115,900 7%

Note: The total “All households” includes households of non-permanent residents not shown in the table. For definitions of household and related concepts, see the Glossary.

Home ownership less common among very recent immigrant households

Only 28% of households consisting exclusively of very recent immigrants own their home, compared to more than one-half of other recent immigrant households and 62% of Canadian-born households. Home ownership is much more common among earlier immigrants than among the Canadian-born.

Figure F-1: Immigrant households (by period of immigration) and Canadian-born households—home ownership, by household type, Toronto Census Metropolitan Area, 2001 (percentage)

Figure F-1

Note: For definitions of household and related concepts, see the Glossary.

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