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Looming election could lull housing policies


Everybody says they do not want to do it. But everybody is getting ready for it. And some are shifting those preparations into overdrive. The next federal election does not have to be held until 2023, but there are sound indications Canadians could be going to the polls before the end of this year.


As the country’s political parties and politicians move into campaign mode government agencies and regulators are going to step back.


This month’s implementation of tougher mortgage stress tests will likely be among the last, significant federal interventions in the housing market until after the, as yet undeclared, election.


Having staked out its position on interest rates, inflation and employment, no one should be surprised if the Bank of Canada is already looking for a neutral corner. Central bankers are notoriously sensitive about not being seen to be influencing the economy in favour of any one party over the others.


Home owners in general, and the first-time home buyer cohort – millennials and Gen Zers – in particular, are key target groups for Canada’s political parties. Given the economic punishment the younger demographics have sustained during the pandemic, don’t expect any party to crush their dreams of home ownership.


The sitting Liberal government has already tweaked the First-Time Home Buyer Incentive Program, making it a little sweeter for purchasers around Toronto, Vancouver and Victoria.


The just announced Canada Greener Homes Grant can also be seen as a pre-election plum for existing home owners.

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