Ontario housing package to cool GTA market coming today

Add in contradictory municipal policies that encourage higher residential densities, while simultaneously discouraging the development of multi-unit residences (apartments and townhouses) wherever there are single-family homes.

The speculation tax, which is aimed to take effect immediately, will not apply to refugees or immigrant nominees.

Overall, the NRST sounds great and might give the average citizen the impression that the Ontario Liberal Government is actually trying to cool down house prices, but in reality it will have very little impact on the demand for houses.

The plan could come as soon as tomorrow and is expected to include rent controls, some type of levy on housing speculators, potentially a vacancy tax, rules to curb bidding wars and measures to discourage foreign buyers.

The most recent possibility floated by the Ontario government is a "non-resident speculation tax", but the province hasn't yet said how exactly that tax would work.

Expanding the province's existing rent control system to cover all tenants.

Tackle practices that may be contributing to tax avoidance and excessive speculation in the housing market. New rules would see all private rental units fall under annual rent increase guidelines.

- A partnership with the Canada Revenue Agency to explore more comprehensive reporting requirements so that correct federal and provincial taxes, including income and sales taxes, are paid on purchases and sales of real estate in Ontario.

A C$125-million, five-year program to encourage construction of new rental housing.

The B.C. government implemented a 15-per-cent tax on property purchases in Metro Vancouver by buyers who aren't citizens or permanent residents.

"Thirty per cent of condos are investor-owned and -rented".

"While we support the government's interest in ensuring viable rental options for Ontarians, well intentioned yet dramatic changes to rental policies meant to improve options for renters will have unintended consequences, resulting in a stagnant rental industry, declining rental assets, and less choice for today's tenants".

Minister Sousa considered the hike in property prices as good news but the government has become increasingly concerned about rapidly rising rents and housing prices, and their impact on people looking to find a home.

Strengthen the Residential Tenancies Act, including a standard lease with multilingual information, tightening provisions for "landlord's own use" evictions, and ensuring adequate tenant compensation if evicted.

According to Toronto mayor, John Tory, there is a growing divide between those who can afford to live and work in the city and those who cannot.

Speaking before the provincial announcements, leading agency, Royal LePage tells OPP.Today that whatever happens, all indications are that home prices will continue to rise this year. Perhaps he has data that is not publicly available yet.

The big winners in the Fair Housing Plan are current and future home sellers because these policies are going to do nothing to cool down house prices in the GTA. Sales leapt forward in the last month and prices climbed 12.3 per cent year-over-year to almost $1.2 million in the first three months of 2017, according to a report from Royal LePage released Tuesday.

Get informed: The Globe's House Price Data Centre offers detailed and exclusive data about where prices are headed in major cities.

  • Todd Kelly