British Columbia’s high housing costs are on the government’s radar as it prepares to table its budget next month, but Premier Christy Clark is ruling out luxury or speculation taxes to cool Vancouver’s hot market.
“We want to be really careful about unintended consequences,” says Clark. “But we’re thinking of a range of solutions…as we put together our budget, this is front and centre for us.”
She says any measures the government takes must not devalue homes, providing this example.
“If somebody owns a $400,000 condo, and government makes a move that reduces the value of that, they’ve got a mortgage on $400,000, not on $350,000,” says Clark.
Of particular focus, Clark says she’ll be looking at things that could help first-time buyers enter the housing market.