A new tariff from the federal government will mean higher construction costs for new homes, which will be passed on to buyers.

The tariff is on US gypsum board which is imported for use in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and the Yukon and Northwest Territories. The preliminary tariff is up to 276 per cent.

The Urban Development Institute says that this additional cost on drywall material will have serious consequences for housing affordability.

“This regressive tax will add around $1,000 to the cost of each home. This is yet another cost that is driving up prices in an already unaffordable housing market,” warned UDI president and CEO Anne McMullin.

The institute is urging builders to make their views known before the end of the consultation period on Dec. 31. 2016.

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