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News Release - We cannot tax our way to housing affordability says UDI President Anne McMulllin

Mon, 10/03/2016

October 3, 2016
News Release -  We cannot tax our way to housing affordability says UDI President Anne McMulllin

In the midst of developing a National Housing Strategy, the Federal Government announced today they will close capital gains exemption loopholes. Only people who were living in their home as a principal residence before their home is sold will be eligible to claim a capital gains exemption.

This announcement follows several other measures from all levels of government aimed at curbing real estate demand. This includes massive increases in Property Transfer Tax for foreign buyers and on luxury homes, an import tariff on Gypsum Wallboard, and the City of Vancouver Vacant Homes Tax.

We cannot tax our way to housing affordability. We urge all levels of Government to commit to increasing the supply of affordable housing as their top priority now that demand measures are being implemented.

The Urban Development Institute believes that if governments truly want to see affordable homes in our communities, they need to make it easier for developers to build housing. The creation of new housing supply will improve housing affordability and generate jobs - whereas demand side measures hinders job creation. There are over 50,000 jobs in Metro Vancouver related to new housing construction - or about three jobs for every new home built.

Moving forward, senior levels of government should expand their roles to ensure that there is an adequate supply of housing in cities throughout Canada. Federal and provincial governments must increase transit and infrastructure funding for cities, but also secure commitments to increased housing supply that is linked to these investments.

The Urban Development Institute is a national non-profit association dedicated to fostering effective communication between the real estate development industry, government and the public, and aims to improve both housing and job opportunities for all British Columbians. 

Note: UDI President  & CEO Anne McMullin is available for interviews.
Media Contact: Communications Manager Gavin Duffus gduffus@udi.org or 604-661-3033