You know all those grouchy bears complaining about the Canadian housing boom?
John Dickie, president of the Canadian Federation of Apartment Associations, said at least part of the housing boom over the past decade can be attributed to the government favouring housing over rental accommodation by providing a much larger subsidy.
“There are a number of rules in the current tax system that amount to massive favoritism towards homeowners as opposed to renters,” said Mr. Dickie Tuesday, adding it’s true for all three levels of government.
In Ontario, the group estimates, municipal, provincial and federal governments provide a subsidy of $2,629 per owner-occupied house, compared to $395 per renter.
“There is a perception among politicians that homeowners vote more frequently than tenants,” said Mr. Dickie. “There is perception in society that homeownership is good and should be encouraged.”
Homeownership rates in Canada have climbed steadily over the past decade and are now closing in on about 70% of households, something Mr. Dickie said “pushes it further than it should.”