Minister Morneau Announces Preventative Measures for a Healthy, Competitive and Stable Housing Market

October 3, 2016 – Toronto, Ontario – Department of Finance Canada

Protecting the long-term financial security of Canadians is a cornerstone of the Government of Canada’s commitment to help the middle class and those working hard to join it. The Government continues to work collaboratively with its municipal and provincial partners to address the concerns of middle class families facing high debt and concerns over housing affordability, and is actively engaged in monitoring and addressing the overall health and stability of the housing market and financial system in Canada.

To that end, Minister of Finance Bill Morneau today announced three measures designed to reinforce the Canadian housing finance system, to help protect the long-term financial security of borrowers and all Canadians, and to improve tax fairness for Canadian homeowners.

Building on measures announced in December 2015, the Government will:

  • Bring consistency to mortgage insurance rules by standardizing eligibility criteria for high- and low-ratio insured mortgages, including a mortgage rate stress test;
  • Improve tax fairness by closing loopholes surrounding the capital gains tax exemption on the sale of a principal residence; and,
  • Consult on how to better protect taxpayers by ensuring that the distribution of risk in the housing finance system is balanced.

These measures follow an in-depth analysis of the housing market conducted by the Department of Finance Canada, in conjunction with various government agencies, including the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions and Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, as well as the ongoing collaboration and information sharing done through the working group with provincial and municipal officials.

Quote

“Canadians have told us they are concerned about growing household debt and rapidly rising house prices in some of our biggest cities, particularly in markets like Toronto and Vancouver. These concerns have grown over many years, and there are no quick fixes. The federal government plays an important role in ensuring that housing markets are stable and function efficiently. My colleagues and I are committed to continuing to work with provinces and municipalities to address the concerns of middle class families, and to ensure Canada’s housing markets and financial system remain strong, stable and resilient well into the future.”

-Bill Morneau, Minister of Finance

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Annie Donolo
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Finance
613-769-7187

Media Relations
Department of Finance Canada
613-369-4000

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