Canadian Home Builders’ Association Welcomes Federal Budget and its Support for Housing Supply – Next It Will Be Up To Municipalities to Action
OTTAWA, ON – April 7, 2022 – The Canadian Home Builders’ Association (CHBA) welcomed many measures in today’s Federal budget, particularly those supporting and encouraging more market-rate housing supply and affordability. Canada’s supply shortage has been long recognized by the International Monetary Fund and others, so it is very positive that the Budget acknowledges the need to double the number of units constructed per year over the next decade and begins to outline steps to get there.
CHBA was pleased to see the official budget allocation to the Housing Accelerator Fund to support municipalities in getting more market-rate housing online faster. As the Fund rolls out, it will be critical that municipalities get onboard with this initiative, as well as related provincial actions, to ensure the root cause of escalating house prices—not enough homes to meet Canada’s population needs—is addressed.
“CHBA has called for collaboration across all levels of government to address housing affordability, and especially housing supply, and for Federal government leadership to help make that happen. With measures in this budget, this leadership is being established,” said Kevin Lee, CEO of CHBA.
Municipalities hold the key to unlocking more supply, and with this Federal support and incentive, CHBA is hopeful more municipalities will move aggressively to help solve the housing supply shortage and alleviate the housing affordability crisis. Further supporting this will be the Budget’s commitment to use both Federal infrastructure and transit investments as leverage with provinces and territories to accelerate their work with their municipalities to build more homes for Canadians.
“We are seeing resistance from some municipalities to unlock more housing supply, so hopefully this Housing Accelerator Fund, combined with leveraging other funding mechanisms, will help overcome some of those barriers,” added Lee.
Adding more supply is a key solution, but one that will take time, so CHBA is also pleased to see Budget measures that help first-time buyers access today’s housing market, including the First Home Saving Account and doubling the First-Time Home Buyers’ Tax Credit. Tax credit announcements to support renovations for aging-in-place and secondary suites, and incentives to energy retrofit homes, will also all help with affordability in the existing housing stock.
CHBA welcomed the Budget’s recognition of the need to get more skilled workers into Canada through the immigration system, which building more homes will certainly require, and is encouraged by the commitment that the majority of the now increased immigration target of 451,000 immigrants by 2024 needs to be skilled workers.
CHBA noted that there are actions proposed in the budget that can raise the cost of housing, like more changes to the building code, and has therefore been recommending extensive support for research and innovation to ensure cost-effective solutions are found before changes in regulation take effect and drive up house prices. The Budget allocation to the National Research Council to develop new construction materials is a good start, and much more will be needed. CHBA has its own innovation activities, for example through its Net Zero Housing Council and Net Zero Home Labelling Program, and will continue to push for more government support for innovation to ensure code changes do not erode affordability.
Journalists wishing to interview Kevin Lee, Chief Executive Officer of the Canadian Home Builders’ Association, are encouraged to submit their request by email to [email protected].
ABOUT THE CANADIAN HOME BUILDERS' ASSOCIATION
Since 1943, the Canadian Home Builders' Association (CHBA) has been "the voice of Canada's residential construction industry." Representing one of the largest industry sectors in Canada, our membership is made up of some 9,000 companies – including home builders, renovators, land developers, trade contractors, product and material manufacturers, building product suppliers, lending institutions, insurance providers, and service professionals.