April 20, 2017.
This morning, Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne, announced 16 Housing Initiatives to help people find affordable housing, increase supply, protect buyers and renters alike and bring stability to the real estate market. This plan includes:
ACTIONS TO ADDRESS DEMAND FOR HOUSING
1. A 15% Non-Resident Speculation Tax (NRST) on the price of homes in the Greater Golden Horseshoe (GGH) purchased by individuals who are not citizens or permanent residents of Canada or by foreign corporations. For more information, please click here
ACTIONS TO PROTECT RENTERS
2. Expanding rent control to all private units in Ontario, including those built after 1991. This will ensure increases in rental costs can only rise at the rate posted in the annual provincial rent increase guideline.
3. Updates to the Residential Tenancies Act to include a standard lease agreement, tighter provisions for "landlord's own use" evictions, and technical changes to the Landlord-Tenant Board meant to make the process fairer
ACTIONS TO INCREASE HOUSING SUPPLY
4. A program to leverage the value of surplus provincial land assets across Ontario to develop a mix of market-price housing and affordable housing.
5. Legislation that would allow Toronto and possibly other municipalities to introduce a vacancy homes property tax in an effort to encourage property owners to sell unoccupied units or rent them out.
6. A plan to ensure property tax for new apartment buildings is charged at a similar rate as other residential properties.
7. A 5-Year, $125 Million program, aimed at encouraging the construction of new rental apartment buildings by rebating a portion of development charges.
8. More flexibility for municipalities when it comes to using property tax tools to encourage development.
9. The creation of a new Housing Supply Team with dedicated provincial employees to identify barriers to barriers to specific housing development projects and work with developers and municipalities to find solutions.
OTHER ACTIONS TO PROTECT HOMEBUYERS AND INCREASE INFORMATION SHARING
10. An effort to understand and tackle practices that may be contributing to tax avoidance and excessive speculation in the housing market.
11. A review of the rules real estate agents are required to follow to ensure that consumers are fairly represented in real estate transactions.
12. The launch of a housing advisory group which will meet quarterly to provide the government with ongoing advice about the state of the housing market and discuss the impact of the measures and any additional steps that are needed.
13. Education for consumers on their rights, particularly on the issue of one real estate professional representing more than one party in a real estate transaction.
14. A partnership with Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) 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.
15. Set timelines for elevator repairs to be established with the sector and the Technical Standards & Safety Authority.
16. Provisions that would require municipalities to consider the appropriate range of unit sizes in higher density residential buildings to accommodate a diverse range of household sizes and income, among other things.