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April 20, 2017 – Councillor calls for additional foreign buyers home tax for municipalities

TORONTO, ON – Jim Karygiannis, City Councillor for Ward 39, Scarborough-Agincourt, credits the thousands of Torontonians who wrote letters and expressed support for a tax on foreign home speculators, which will now be imposed by the Ontario Provincial Government.

“I have been sounding the alarm on the unsustainable and dramatic rise in home prices in the Greater Toronto area for many months. Thousands of my constituents, and residents across Toronto, wrote to Premier Kathleen Wynne directly through my website expressing clear support for a tax on foreign home investors,” says Karygiannis.

Today’s announcement by the Province follows direct action from Councillor Karygiannis in calling for a tax on foreign home speculators. We now see the Province will impose a fifteen percent tax on foreign home purchasers in the Greater Golden Horseshoe area who are not Canadian citizens or permanent residents.

Toronto home prices capped a record quarter gains in March. Prices increased 6.2% in March 2017 from the month before, according to the Canadian Real Estate Association. The Bank of Canada Governor, Stephen Poloz, called home speculation “unsustainable” in Toronto’s housing market.

“Public polls from firms including Mainstreet Research and Campaign Research show that the public demanded action from government. The most recent poll shows that 64% of Torontonians want the government to intervene in the housing market and support is strongest with younger people. Their futures are on the line,” says Karygiannis.

“Toronto City Council endorsed my motion to impose a five percent land transfer tax on non-residents purchasing homes in Toronto. Today I am calling for Toronto City Council and all municipalities across Ontario to follow through with this motion and endorse a five percent surtax on top of the fifteen percent imposed by the Province,” said Councillor Karygiannis.

Councillor Karygiannis will be writing to all his municipal colleagues across the province urging them to consider asking the province to allow them to impose the additional land transfer tax to foreign home buyers. “It is about time that we protect our children and make sure that they will be able to afford homes in our communities” concluded Councillor Karygiannis

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