Yesterday, Premier Jason Kenney’s government unveiled Budget 2019, which contains modest reductions while maintaining frontline services. It aims to get Albertans back to work by focusing on creating the right conditions for growth.
Our industry’s success is directly tied to the economy and the ability and hope of Albertans to invest in their homes and communities. To the extent that the Government of Alberta’s actions spur growth in jobs and investment, the real estate market – and REALTORS® – will benefit.
Most importantly, Alberta remains free of land-transfer tax. AREA has long advocated for Alberta to remain free of this unfair form of taxation that reduces housing affordability, creates barriers to home ownership, and victimizes those at the margins of home ownership, including the young, elderly and those on a fixed income. Recent University of Calgary’s School of Public Policy research validated AREA’s position.
We are also pleased to see Kenney’s administration continue to support the repealing of the federal mortgage stress test within Alberta, including in his open letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau this week. A test intended to cool the housing market in Toronto and Vancouver does not make sense when applied nationally. We encourage the Alberta government to explore the options around made-in-Alberta solutions to the stress test in addition to advocating with its federal counterpart.
Brad MitchellAREA CEO