The best way to ensure millennials will be able to buy a home is by putting more homes on the market, the Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA) told Ontario’s Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs last week. In its 2017 pre-budget consultation, OREA recommended the creation of an Affordable Home Ownership Task Force to determine how government can best improve housing supply and expand consumer choice.

“We are facing a critical housing supply shortage that is putting home ownership out of reach for Ontario’s first-time buyers and young families,” says Valerie Miles, OREA Government Relations Committee Chair. “In some markets, housing inventory is at all-time lows and prices are at record highs. Increasing the housing stock is necessary to give buyers more options at affordable levels. We need industry leaders to come together on this issue before the supply problem gets any worse.”

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In its pre-budget consultation, OREA recommended several ways to increase housing stock, including reducing the red tape around getting building permits approved, dedicated funding to help service land designated for development to incent builders to start projects sooner and moving away from the proposed intensification targets under the provincial growth plan to allow developers to build housing types such as townhomes, duplexes and stacked townhomes.

“The government is asking Ontarians for ways to create jobs, grow the economy and help people in their everyday lives – a strong real estate market checks off all three boxes,” says Tim Hudak, OREA CEO. “Every home transaction generates $55,000 in economic spin-offs, which creates jobs and supports local business, while home ownership offers endless social benefits for families and communities. If the goal of the pre-budget consultation is to build up Ontario’s future, then finding ways to make home ownership affordable is a great place to start.”


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