BROWN AND HARDEMAN ADDRESS HOUSING AFFORDABILITY
QUEEN’S PARK – Today in a press conference Ontario PC Leader Patrick Brown and Ernie Hardeman, Oxford MPP and PC Critic for Municipal Affairs and Housing, announced the measures they would like to see in the upcoming budget to address the housing affordability crisis in Ontario.
“Many young people in Ontario are seeing their dream of homeownership moving further and further out of reach,” said Hardeman. “This used to be a problem that you heard about only in Toronto, but now it is occurring throughout the GTA, in Kitchener-Waterloo and we are seeing prices increase dramatically here in Oxford.”
Woodstock-Ingersoll & District Real Estate Board reported that the average price of homes sold in March 2017 was $338,006, which is a 20.2% increase from March 2016. Tillsonburg District Real Estate Board stated that the average price of homes sold in March 2017 was a record $319,492, up 24.9% from March 2016. Both boards reported significantly lower supply.
In a joint letter to Finance Minister Sousa, Brown and Hardeman asked for the following to be included in the upcoming budget:
- A commitment to address supply, including reducing the red tape and regulatory burden, which both limits the supply of new housing, and increases carrying costs which are passed on to consumers;
- A commitment to addressing demand, including collecting data on speculative vacancies;
- A commitment to review the government portfolio immediately to determine how many vacant residential properties the government owns in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area; and
- The establishment of a panel of industry experts – including professional planners, builders, mortgage professionals, realtors and municipal representatives – to develop both short and long-term solutions to address Ontario’s housing challenge.
Later today Hardeman will be tabling a motion in the Legislature calling on the government to establish this housing affordability panel.
“The housing sector is complex and there is no one single action that will fix Ontario’s affordability challenges,” said Hardeman. “That is why we need to create a panel which includes the people who plan the houses, the people the people who build them and the people who live in them to develop an evidence-based comprehensive plan.”
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For more information, contact:
Ernie Hardeman, MPP Oxford