Your Vote, Your Voice, Your Choice

Your Vote, Your Voice, Your Choice

11 Days Until Voting Day

Are you ready?

As we are fast approaching voting day, visit daily to read more about real estate related housing matters that your vote has the power to shape.





Votre vote, votre voix, votre choix

11 jours avant le jour du vote

Es-tu prêt?

Alors que nous approchons rapidement du jour du vote, visitez tous les jours pour en savoir plus sur les questions de logement liées à l'immobilier que votre vote a le pouvoir de façonner.

As Canadians prepare to cast their votes in eleven days, affordable housing continues to be a hot topic.

Whether you are a homeowner, renter, landlord, full time Vancouver resident, or vacation home owner in Vancouver, housing affordability effects you.

Darlene K. Hyde of The Province writes about housing affordability below.

Dealing with housing affordability is more than just politics and policy. It’s about ensuring all Canadians have a safe and stable place to build their future, create communities and raise their families.

Housing affordability is one of the leading issues in the current federal election campaign, with the main parties having each issued partial policy platforms.

This reflects the issue’s importance across Canada and particularly here in B.C., where many residents are under significantly more pressure than elsewhere. In fact, nearly six in 10 uncommitted Canadian voters cited access to affordable housing as a top election issue, according to an August 2019 Angus Reid survey.

But dealing with housing affordability is more than just politics and policy. It’s about ensuring all Canadians have a safe and stable place to build their future, create communities and raise their families.

In short, it’s about having a place to call home. Nobody understands that better than the housing sector professions that support Canadians as they make the biggest financial decisions of their lives.

Housing sector professions such as realtors, mortgage brokers and insurers, landlords and builders witness the impact of housing policy measures on Canadians every day. As such, they have a unique perspective on what’s really helping — or standing in the way — of housing affordability.
These professions can therefore be a valuable resource to policy-makers and party-leaders because they can offer real-life feedback on newly implemented policy measures.

Nowhere is this more true than in B.C., where housing affordability challenges are particularly acute. Recently, six organizations representing the B.C. housing sector partnered to develop a series of housing affordability recommendations that focus on practical, much-needed solutions. These organizations include the British Columbia Real Estate Association, Canadian Mortgage Brokers Association, Landlord BC, Mortgage and Title Insurance Industry Association of Canada, the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver and the Urban Development Institute.

The recommendations can be viewed in full at, but here is a summary:

Remove the GST on new rental housing: Removal would make rental projects more financially viable, which would add much-needed rental housing stock to our communities. At the same time, it could contribute to lower rental rates for affordable housing projects. A recent analysis of a 117-unit project in Vancouver, for example, showed how removing the GST could reduce monthly rents three to six per cent.

• Link Federal Transit Investments to Housing Targets: This would result in better land-use planning while increasing affordable housing supply. For example, preferred terms and rates could be provided to housing projects that are within a specified distance from a current or planned frequent transit network. This would also encourage the growth of more sustainable communities, helping to address another key concern of Canadians: climate change.
• Adjust the Mortgage Stress Test: A change to recognize lower-risk mortgages will help qualified Canadians become homeowners. By reintroducing 30-year amortizations the federal government can help more Canadians afford a home by taking on a slightly longer mortgage. At the same time, lengthening amortizations will reflect that homes are a long-term investment into our futures and not a market commodity.
We urge all of the parties to review our recommendations. And we look forward to future opportunities to help shape housing policies that benefit communities across B.C. and Canada.
In the meantime, we also urge Canadians to make sure their voices are heard when it comes to shaping our future. That means informing themselves on key issues like housing affordability and above all, turning out to vote.

Article written by Darlene K. Hyde is the CEO of the B.C. Real Estate Association.