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CFAA Supports NEW shared principles on housing policy

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CFAA Supports NEW shared principles on housing policy

The statement of shared principles of the National Forum on Housing and the Economy, addresses the important issues of housing availability, choice and affordability. One in 4 Canadians pays more than 30% of their income on housing, which is beyond the accepted standard for affordability. When too large a proportion of household income is required to pay for housing, other necessities are often sacrificed.

As well, Canada’s economic growth is being hindered by the lack of affordable housing and a lack of rental housing in growing communities.

CFAA commends the Forum for recognizing the importance of preserving and adding to Canada’s rental housing stock, including private market, non-profit and co-operative rental housing. Reforms to the federal tax system to reduce taxes on rental housing are critically needed to retain existing private market rental housing and to encourage the development of more rental housing. Those reforms would moderate rent increases, and boost labour mobility and economic growth, while reducing unemployment.


One in 3 Canadians rent their homes, and of those, 5 in 6 rent their homes in the private rental market. However, of the housing construction that has occurred over the past 15 years, only 10% has been purpose-built rental construction.

CFAA also commends the Forum for supporting the view that direct financial assistance to low-income households in the private sector is a positive policy choice. Subsidizing low-income households, rather than attaching subsidies to rental units, increases tenants’ ability to choose where they want to live, and enables them to move, whether it be in reaction to changing circumstances or to employment opportunities.

CFAA looks forward to further consultation within the Forum and with the all orders of government, in order to develop solutions in accordance with the principles adopted by the Forum. We believe the federal government should act on the shared principles, both in the 2015 Budget and beyond.

Here is the link to the shared principles and the list of members of the new Housing Forum:

CFAA supports NEW shared principles on housing policy

CFAA supports the statement of shared principles which was released today by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) on behalf of the National Forum on Housing and the Economy, of which CFAA is a founding member.

The Forum includes groups whose members provide housing in diverse forms — public, social, co-operative and private market housing, both owner-occupied and rented.

The Forum is a major step forward for addressing housing affordability, since the various members of the Forum have come together for the first time to agree on principles for reforms to government policy on housing.

The Forum members seek reforms from all orders of government concerning:

  • support for households living in social housing
  • policies to encourage the expansion of rental housing
  • improved opportunities for homeownership
  • improved steps to reduce homelessness.

Forum members believe that the implementation of reforms and programs in keeping with the agreed-on principles will:

  • provide jobs
  • help the economy grow
  • make housing more affordable
  • reduce homelessness.

The benefits of acting on the shared principles will apply to most segments of society, including:

  • the homeless
  • low-income renters
  • business people in many sectors and regions
  • tradespeople
  • construction workers
  • young people
  • recent immigrants
  • working families
  • taxpayers

CFAA President John Dickie says, “CFAA is excited that major housing stakeholders have come together to advocate to reduced taxes on rental housing, and increased use of direct financial assistance for low-income households, rather than attaching subsidies to rental units. Those are policy goals CFAA has been advocating for twenty years.”
For more information, contact John Dickie, President, CFAA (613) 235-0101, or at

CFAA represents the owners and managers of close to one million residential rental suites across

1600 Carling Ave. Suite 640  Ottawa, Ontario K1Z 1G3
Tel. 613-235-0101 Fax 613-238-0101 Web: