Addressing Affordable Housing and Homelessness

The Editor

To Whom It May Concern,

All I’m hearing lately is the lack of affordable housing and homelessness. Politicians have been making promises at all levels of government but there have been no clear or immediate solutions or actions. I have put together some thoughts on the matter these matters and some others. The numbers used are approximates, but not relevant, its the ideas and solutions that are relevant.

I recently heard that the City of Ottawa had a budget 12 million dollars (2023) to put the homeless in motels/hotels throughout the city. And this is happening all over the country. Had they taken the $12 million of taxpayers money and purchased RVs and trailers and then placed them in various group locations around the city where there is access to infrastructure, then our problems will begin to be resolved, NOW. I know it sounds simple and it may not be, but it is an IMMEDIATE step will work in just about any town or city and accomplished NOW.  The only ones winning in the present situation are the hotels/motel industry; certainly the taxpayer is not getting any benefit at all from the $12 million.

Affordable housing, must ask yourself, “what are the barriers that prevent someone from buying a home today?” It’s of course affordability and above all getting the money to actually buy the home. In this economy it is nearly impossible to save for the additional costs associated with buying a home.

Two important items for these comments are, 1.  I can afford a 500,000.00 mortgage over 25 years and I am a first time home buyer and 2. I can afford a 500,000.00 mortgage over 25 years and I am a second time or more home buyer.

Here are some solutions to getting people into housing:

  1. Remove the 5.0% down payment for first home buyers. If I can afford a $500,000 mortgage why do they need a down payment? This just keeps the potential homeowner renting;
  2. Remove the +20% down payment for second home buyers. Most second time home buyers sold because of marital break up, or other unforeseen tragedy, getting a +20% down payment for most single parents, or single people in general, is impossible. Again of I can afford a $500,000 mortgage cut the down payment?;
  3. Lock in interest rates for 30 years as they do in the USA. Home owners are not sleeping due to the up and downs. Only the banks are winning in this situation.;
  4. Institute new rules making home inspections mandatory and that the inspectors will be held accountable for their reports and it be included in the purchase price.
  5. A realtor cannot represent both a seller and a buyer. They must be from different companies as well. This prevents a realtor or company from pushing up their commissions but playing the buyer against the seller;
  6. Legal fees: why do I need a lawyer do these duties? Should it not be left to the realtor/company to do these things? You don’t need a lawyer to purchase a RV or a boat or a car that costs a 100,000 of dollars, why is it required for a property? Only the lawyers are benefitting;
  7. Abolish the land transfer tax, NOW;
  8. Set up infrastructure like roads and water in green spaces for RVs and mobile homes. These would also be used for the homeless as well. There are provincial, federal and municipal vacant lands around. And this is something that can be  done NOW;
  9. Remove the HST/GST of new homes and properties;
  10. Make “Air BnBs” illegal;
  11. Force universities to create trailer parks for student residences and utilize existing RVs that are on the market.:
  12. Prevent by law, landlords from renovicting and introduce rent control, tied to the CP Index; and
  13. Lastly, utility costs and property taxes should never exceed inflation.

Thank you for reading.  I will be forwarding this on to various Government officials, municipal, provincial, and federal, newspapers etc.

Terry Fader
North Lancaster ON



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