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Higher taxes no solution to Vancouver’s real estate crunch, says study

By Mike Laanela for CBC News

Cutting through red tape and allowing greater density will do more to create affordable housing in Metro Vancouver than taxing speculators and foreigners, according to a new study.

“I’m not suggesting that the tax has no part to play, but that approach is unbalanced and one-sided,” says James Tansey, an associate professor at UBC’s Centre for Social Innovation & Impact Investing.

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By focusing on reducing demand with taxes rather than increasing supply, the province’s goal of fostering more affordable housing might be unachievable, he argues.

“It is possible that higher marginal taxes on single family homes above $3 million will actually increase the price of condominiums and townhomes in the region as they become the affordable option,” he notes.

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