January 24, 2022, by The Editorial Board
According to the Canadian Real Estate Association, the cost of a typical Canadian home hit $811,700 in December, up an astounding 26.6% from a year earlier. That was the biggest increase yet in a two-year pandemic housing price boom, and it also far exceeds the pace of price rises in 2017 and 2006. And almost 667,000 existing properties changed hands last year â€“ 20% more than in 2020, itself a record sales year.
However tight and expensive the rental market is, there is one bit of good news: After decades of barely any construction of new, purpose-built rental housing, more apartments are finally being built, from coast to coast. Of course, itâ€™s not yet enough â€“ but the trajectory is at least moving in the right direction.
Facing an election this spring, Ontarioâ€™s Doug Ford government has struck a housing affordability task force whose primary goal is â€œincreasing the supply of market-rate rental and ownership housing.â€ Its report was due Jan. 31. Early suggestions point to the possibility of it proposing big changes, including forcing cities to accept looser density rules â€“ which will get more housing built, especially rentals, in existing neighbourhoods. However, it remains to be seen if that is what Ontario will deliver.
What does this mean?
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