Homes For B.C.
A plan for affordability
Everyone needs a place to live. That’s why we are taking swift action to address the housing crisis, with the biggest investment in housing affordability in B.C. history – $7 billion over the next ten years.
Our 30-point plan tackles demand by taxing speculation, closes loopholes, and cracks down on fraud, boosting supply by working with partners to deliver tens of thousands of new affordable homes across the province and making renting more secure for people.
Curbing Demand in the Housing Market
Taking action on housing speculation:
Too many people are using B.C. homes as a way to make a quick buck instead of living in and contributing to our communities. Beginning fall 2018, the B.C. Government will introduce a new speculation tax on residential property. This tax will target foreign and domestic speculators who own residential property in B.C., but don’t pay taxes here, including those who leave homes sitting vacant.
Expanding and increasing the foreign buyers tax:
Affordability for B.C. residents comes first. That’s why we are increasing the foreign buyers tax rate to 20% and expanding it to also apply to the Capital Regional District, the Fraser Valley, the Central Okanagan and the Nanaimo Regional District, to make sure speculators don’t just move on to other communities.
Closing loopholes and cracking down on fraud:
Fraud and corruption in real estate are distorting housing prices in B.C. For too long people have been skirting the tax system when investing in real estate. We are moving to stop tax evasion in pre-sale condo reassignments, taking action to end hidden ownership, and strengthening provincial auditing and enforcement powers.
Building Homes People Need
Building affordable rentals for the missing middle:
Our $7 billion investment for housing affordability recognizes historically low vacancy rates and high home prices. That’s why this investment includes $1.8 billion in rental housing to improve choices for middle income British Columbians.
New homes for students:
We’re partnering with post-secondary institutions to deliver 5,000 new on-campus beds so that students have an affordable place to live while they pursue their studies.
Help for those most in need:
Homelessness has become a serious issue in many B.C. communities. We’re acting quickly to get people into homes and off of the streets, including building an additional 2,500 new homes with 24-hour support, seven days a week.
Working together to deliver more supply:
We are creating a new HousingHub that will bring together the non-profit sector, faith groups, for-profit builders, all levels of government and others to find and develop or re-develop available land and buildings, creating affordable homes for people who live and work in our communities.
These are just a few of the things we’re doing to boost supply of the housing people need.
Improving Security for Renters
Increasing rental assistance to seniors and low-income families:
We are increasing rental assistance by an average of $800 per year for low-income families, and by an average of $930 per year for seniors. Helping over 35,000 households make their rent more affordable.
Strengthening laws to protect renters and manufactured home owners:
We will introduce changes to our housing laws to make sure that renters are treated fairly in the event of renovictions and demovictions, and to improve protections for owners of manufactured homes.
Extending the life, quality and affordability of existing affordable housing:
To make sure existing social housing continues to be safe and secure, we are investing $1 billion over 10 years into seismic and fire-safety upgrades and essential building repairs and maintenance, making homes safer and more comfortable for residents.
Message from Finance Minister Carole James
British Columbia is thriving. Our economy is strong and we’ve seen record-level employment growth. But strong economic indicators don’t tell the whole story. Not everyone in B.C. is getting ahead, and it’s time that changed.
Budget 2018 is a budget that works for you. It makes your life more affordable and delivers the services that people count on. It starts with moving forward on a made-in-B.C. child care plan that will make child care more affordable and available for tens of thousands of families. It takes bold steps to tackle housing affordability with a new tax on foreign and domestic housing speculators, an historic investment in housing supply and plans to shut down tax loopholes and money laundering in our housing market.
It is about investing in education and training so people have the skills they need to get good paying jobs. It is about building critical infrastructure that leads to sustainable economic growth, with the highest level of capital investment in B.C.’s history.
Budget 2018 helps people get ahead because we believe all British Columbians should have the opportunity to reach their full potential.