Foreign investors do not seem to be Canada’s major housing problem, but it is those who sell properties within a short period of buying them who are causing the affordability dilemma, especially in Vancouver.
This is the claim of Bob Rennie, a real estate mogul and founder of Rennie Marketing Systems, Vancity Buzz reported.
“If we start to put out a foreign investment tax, we’re going to send a wrong message,” he was quoted as saying. “I’m worried about the optics. I think it hurts Vancouver, it hurts B.C. and it hurts Canada.”
Foreigners looking to invest in other things apart from housing, including manufacturing and job creation, may be scared off by the tax imposed on them.
“If that condo has gone up and you decide to sell it right away, you sold it to make money and not home ownership,” he said. “You clenched it from the jaws of a young couple who wanted to live there.”
He added that with the help of the municipal and provincial governments, the tax should grant $5,000, $10,000 or $15,000 to first-time homebuyers. A metric should also be established based around tenure of residency and income, Rennie said.
Vancouver mayor Gregor Robertson echoed Rennie’s statement
“It’s clear that rampant speculation on real estate is driving up prices in Vancouver,” he was quoted as saying during the same event where Rennie spoke.
“Vancouver needs the B.C. government to take action on creating a speculation tax and recognize that we need a fair and level playing field to make housing more affordable for residents in Vancouver, and throughout the province.”

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