TORONTO – With municipal elections being held on October 24, 2022, the Toronto Regional Real Estate Board (TRREB) has launched a campaign to ensure that candidates for municipal office understand the importance of making housing affordability a priority. In support of this campaign, TRREB has released the results of new public opinion polling conducted by Ipsos Public Affairs for TRREB on various housing affordability issues and launched GiveMeOptions.ca, to help the public easily understand and voice their concerns on these issues directly to current and future municipal councils.
“Housing affordability is one of the most significant issues facing the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), so it is important that it continues to be given the attention it deserves before municipal election day. Municipal council decisions directly impact housing affordability, especially by restricting the supply of homes available to buy or rent, and by directly driving up housing prices with government imposed fees and charges which currently add up to 24 per cent of the purchase price of a home. We are calling on all candidates for municipal councils in the GTA to ensure that they support policies that will help give home buyers the right options,” said Kevin Crigger, TRREB President.
TRREB’s GiveMeOptions.ca campaign is calling on municipal election candidates to address lengthy development approval processes, and exclusionary zoning, which delay or prevent new supply of homes; high development fees that drive up the price of homes; significant upfront costs like the Municipal Land Transfer Tax that strain home buyer budgets and discourage existing homeowners from offering their homes for sale; and potential new policies like mandatory home energy audits, which could interfere with and delay the home selling and buying process and should be voluntary.
“REALTORS® have their ears to the ground. We talk to home buyers, sellers, and renters every day, and we know that housing affordability is top of mind. Many feel like they just don’t have any or the right housing options, and they know that municipal councils can change that with policies that will bring more housing supply to the market. A recent poll conducted by Ipsos demonstrates this,” said Crigger.
The new Ipsos poll found strong public support for TRREB’s views on these issues. Specifically, the poll found that:
- 66 per cent of Torontonians are concerned that potential increases to the Municipal Land Transfer Tax on properties priced over $2 million could mean fewer homes for sale across all price-points if it discourages “move-up” buyers;
- 73 per cent of Torontonians and 78 per cent of “905” residents believe that home energy audit and ratings should remain voluntary;
- 83 per cent of Torontonians and 87 per cent of “905” residents believe that governments should remain focused on providing financial incentives such as rebates on renovations that improve a home’s energy efficiency;
- 64 per cent of Torontonians and 78 per cent of “905” residents think it is more appropriate to include home energy audits as part of the current voluntary home inspection process;
- 71 per cent of Toronto and “905” residents, combined, believe that municipalities should focus their efforts on increasing the supply of homes for sale and rent, rather than trying to reduce demand; and
- 54 per cent of Toronto and “905” residents, combined, oppose increases to development charges.
“We encourage all residents of the GTA to visit GiveMeOptions.ca where they can learn more and easily send a message to their local election candidates to encourage them to continue to make these issues a priority,” added Crigger.
The Toronto Regional Real Estate Board is Canada’s largest real estate board with more than 68,000 residential and commercial professionals connecting people, property and communities.