On Thursday April 20th 2017 the Ontario Government introduced the Fair Housing Plan. This set of 16 comprehensive measures is intended to help people find an affordable place to call home, while bringing stability to the real estate market and protecting the investment of homeowners.

Where do we stand?

The Dufferin Board of Trade supports the Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC) position that we are encouraged to see that the government has committed to working with municipalities to remove the barriers to getting more new homes and listings on the market faster. While we acknowledge that the government is taking action to ensure affordability, we believe that measures should target increasing supply and protecting landlords while encouraging new opportunities for growth. We encourage the province to keep a close eye on what impact these new policy measures will have on housing supply going forward.

Background Quick Facts

After two consecutive years of double-digit gains, average house prices in the Toronto region reached $916,567 in March 2017, up 33.2 per cent from a year earlier. RBC Economics recently highlighted that housing affordability in the Toronto area for the fourth quarter of 2016 was at its second-worst level on record since the mid-1980s.

Key Details of the Announcement (OCC)

Actions to Address Demand for Housing

Implement a new 15 percent Non-Resident Speculation tax (NRST) on the price of homes purchased by non citizens or permanent residents of Canada or by foreign corporation.

Actions to Protect Renters

Expand rent control to all private rental units in Ontario, including those built after 1991.

Actions to Protect Renters

  • Introducing a targeted $125 million, five-year program to encourage the construction of new rental apartment buildings by rebating a portion of development charges;
  • Providing flexibility to municipalities to use property tax tools to enhance development opportunities;
  • Creation of a new Housing Supply Team of dedicated provincial employees with a mandate to identify barriers to housing development projects.

Other Actions:

  • Working with municipalities to better reflect the needs of a growing Greater Golden Horseshoe through an updated Growth Plan;
  • Establish a Housing Advisory Group that will meet quarterly to provide ongoing advice about the state of the housing market and discuss the impact of measures announced in the Fair Housing Plan.