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Canada Broadens Fight to Cool Surging Home Prices: QuickTake Q&A

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Photographer: Andrew Francis Wallace/Toronto Star via Getty Images
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Canada’s most crowded province, Ontario -- home to Toronto and its hot real-estate market -- has followed Vancouver and the federal government in trying to tame booming house prices in hopes of preventing a crash. The template is the one used elsewhere across the country: Tax foreign buyers, expand rent control and put levies on vacant properties. 

On April 20, provincial Finance Minister Charles Sousa unveiled a 16-point plan that called for a 15 percent tax on foreign "speculators" in the Toronto region and expanded rent control for buildings constructed after 1991. He also proposed a five-year, C$125-million ($93 million) program to encourage the construction of new rental units by refunding a portion of the fees collected from builders. This followed moves by the province of British Columbia, which enacted a 15 percent tax on foreign home buyers in Vancouver in 2016.