B.C.’s interest-free loans could hurt new homebuyers

Stoking demand for housing without a significant increase in housing stock will likely do more harm than good

B.C.’s interest-free loans could hurt new homebuyersBy Steve Lafleur and Josef Filipowicz The Fraser Institute Due to Vancouver’s sky-high housing prices, many residents worry they might never be able to climb the property ladder. Indeed, a recent survey found that housing issues ranked as British Columbians’ greatest concern heading into next year’s election. So it should come as no surprise that the…

Vancouver’s tax on vacant homes misses the point

When new homes don't keep up with demand, buyers or renters bid for a dwindling pool of listings, pushing prices up and people out

Vancouver’s tax on vacant homes misses the pointBy Steve Lafleur and Josef Filipowicz The Fraser Institute Vancouver city council needs a multi-faceted approach to encouraging growth in the supply of housing in the city. It's latest strategy falls far short. Council recently approved an annual one per cent tax on the value of vacant homes. The move was made to encourage owners…

Ontario must address housing affordability

Best practices from homebuilder-friendly neighbours can teach municipalities how to allow the supply of new housing to meet demand

Ontario must address housing affordabilityKenneth P. Green Steve Lafleur and Josef Filipowicz The Fraser Institute Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne has announced that the province will not introduce a property transfer tax on foreign buyers, similar to that introduced in British Columbia. The premier and her government should be commended for avoiding an impulsive reaction to high housing prices. It’s…

Red tape in Calgary-Edmonton Corridor stifling housing supply

Encouraging a healthy supply of new homes where they are most needed will help ensure future generations can continue to prosper in Alberta

Red tape in Calgary-Edmonton Corridor stifling housing supplyBy Kenneth P. Green Steve Lafleur and Josef Filipowicz The Fraser Institute Through good times and bad, the cost of housing in Alberta’s biggest cities remains a concern. Consider this. Despite the economic slowdown, compared to 15 years ago average house prices are up almost 140 per cent in Calgary and more than 160 per…

What homebuilders think about Ontario’s housing regulations

Reduce housing barriers to help ensure that Canada’s largest urban area remains affordable and keeps attracting the best and brightest

What homebuilders think about Ontario’s housing regulationsBy Kenneth P. Green Josef Filipowicz The Fraser Institute Housing headlines are everywhere. Federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau recently announced a raft of housing reforms. Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne and Toronto Mayor John Tory recently rang alarms bells on housing. And according to a report released recently by the Toronto Real Estate Board, Toronto house prices…

Palo Alto, Calif. provides a cautionary tale for Vancouver

A typical home in Palo Alto goes for about $2.5 million because of onerous land-use regulations, much like those in Vancouver

Palo Alto, Calif. provides a cautionary tale for VancouverBy Josef Filipowicz and Steve Lafleur The Fraser Institute Palo Alto, California, home to high-tech giants including Facebook and Tesla, made the news recently when planning commissioner Kate Downing resigned and announced her family’s plan to move to another city due to her family’s inability to afford housing in Palo Alto’s red hot market, where…

Rule of law under attack in B.C.

By imposing a tax on already signed agreements, B.C. is demonstrating a worrisome indifference to the rule of law

Rule of law under attack in B.C.By Kenneth Green Josef Filipowicz and Steve Lafleur The Fraser Institute Mike de Jong, B.C.’s finance minister, recently and unexpectedly announced an additional property transfer tax of 15 per cent on foreign nationals purchasing residential property in Metro Vancouver. Whatever the merits of this policy, many have overlooked a troubling element of its implementation –…

Red tape, not foreign buyers, drives housing affordability woes

Heavy-handed policies have consequences that are worse than the problem they seek to fix

Red tape, not foreign buyers, drives housing affordability woesBy Kenneth P. Green Steve Lafleur and Josef Filipowicz The Fraser Institute Foreign nationals purchasing homes in Metro Vancouver and the Greater Toronto Area is a topic that continues to make national headlines, especially as housing prices rise. This came to a head recently when B.C. Minister of Finance Mike de Jong announced an additional…

Foreign purchase tax ignores crucial source of housing unaffordability

A tax on foreign buyers may seem like an easy fix but it ignores the fact the housing supply is not keeping up with demand

Foreign purchase tax ignores crucial source of housing unaffordabilityBy Kenneth P. Green Steve Lafleur and Josef Filipowicz The Fraser Institute In response to the fear that foreign homebuyers are driving up Vancouver housing prices, the provincial government has decided to introduce an additional 15 per cent property transfer tax on foreign home buyers in Metro Vancouver. This move diverts attention from the underlying…

A simple solution to the high cost of housing

Cutting local red tape will increase housing stock and reduce prices in Toronto, Vancouver and beyond

A simple solution to the high cost of housingBy Ken Green Ian Herzog and Josef Filipowicz The Fraser Institute House prices have grown substantially in recent years, especially in Canada’s biggest cities. Many Canadians are concerned about this trend, and a number of solutions have been proposed. However, many of these solutions are unlikely to be effective. Taxes on luxury properties might be…