Wow, an amazing result in this election if it holds. I was sure that the Liberals would pull off another majority but it seems the anger against them was greater than anticipated and we seem to be converging on a minority government with the Liberals one seat ahead of the NDP and the Greens tripling their seats.
What is likely to come if this holds? Well could be a Liberal minority although I don’t see how that would be effective, or could be a coalition. Despite some grumblings about John Horgan’s temper, it is more likely that that the Greens will want to work with the NDP as the two big priorities for Weaver was to get money out of politics and bring in proportional representation which the NDP has also promised. Of course at current counts a coalition only gets them to 44 which is hardly enough to be effective.
At the very least it seems like it might be worth looking at what each party says about housing. Let’s look at the NDP Platform and what it says about housing:
- New Supply: Build 114,000 affordable rental, non profit, co-op and owner purchase housing units through partnerships over ten years. Use public land to build housing. Get new student housing built by removing unnecessary rules that prevent universities and colleges from building affordable student housing
- Renters: Introduce a refundable renter’s rebate of $400 dollars per rental household in BC each year. Close the BC Liberals’ “fixed term lease” loophole and ensure controls on rent increases are enforced. Re-invest in co-op housing.
- Speculation: Close the loopholes that let speculators dodge taxes and hide their identities. Direct the revenue from the absentee speculators’ tax into a Housing Affordability Fund. Establish a multi-agency task force to fight tax fraud and money laundering in the BC real estate marketplace.
- Foreign buyers tax: There isn’t anything specific in the platform, but other reports have said the NDP want to bring in a 2% foreign speculators tax for foreign owners that don’t pay income tax.
What about the Greens? Well looking at the Green Platform on housing we can see it is a bit more aggressive:
- New Supply: Build 4000 affordable units per year. Use public land to build housing. Rethink zoning.
- Owners: Make the home owner grant income tested. Make property taxes progressive based on income.
- Renters: Introduce incentives for construction of rental properties. Enhance the Residential Tenancy Act with more protections for renters.
- Speculation: Implement a sliding scale PTT from 0-12% for properties between $200,000 and $3M with additional tax for flippers. Lifetime capital gains limit of $750,000.
- Foreign buyers tax: Expand across province, raise to 30%.
What do you think will happen? What will be the effect on Victoria’s and BC’s market?