With prices rising rapidly in markets such as Toronto, affordable housing is becoming more and more of an issue. The implementation of “Inclusionary Zoning”, a relatively new concept, is aimed at helping to increase the stock of affordable housing.
December 8, 2016 marked the day that Bill 7, the Promoting Affordable Housing Act 2016, was passed by the Ontario Legislature and received Royal Assent. The question now is how will the Bill 7 amendments to the Planning Act R.S.O. 1990 (the “Act”) affect not only developers, but municipalities, the housing market, and most importantly the consumers. Unfortunately without speculating, it is too early to tell. However, it is clear that the amendments will spark debate. The regulations, still to follow, will provide the necessary detail to better evaluate the impact of Bill 7.
In an attempt to balance the budget, Toronto City Council has approved a 2% increase in property taxes for 2017, which could cost the average homeowner an additional $90 this year.
The increase will be more like 3.29% once the City Building Fund and other fees are factored in.
The Mayor’s office lauded the move, saying the increase is below the rate of inflation. Critics, however, are calling the increase unsustainable and disadvantageous to the City’s most vulnerable.
The Government has made a change to the Canada Revenue Agency’s reporting requirements for the sale of a principal residence.
Your principal residence (the home where you reside) is exempt from capital gains tax upon sale. Previously to the rule change, you did not have to report the sale of your principal residence.
Now, starting with the 2016 tax year, you will be required to report the details of the sale of your home on your income tax return. The new rule also applies to deemed dispositions, such as when you change the use of the property.
The change is aimed at improving compliance with the tax system. For further information you may speak to your qualified tax professional.