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Vancouver city councillor wants foreign-buyer restrictions on real estate

A local politician wants the city of Vancouver to pressure the B.C. government to take drastic measures to improve housing affordability.

Vancouver city councillor Adriane Carr plans to introduce a motion Tuesday asking council to support restrictions on foreign buyers in the real estate market, a property tax surcharge on existing foreign owners, and a ‘flipping tax.’ The motion echoes the B.C. Green Party’s demands on housing.

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“These are very desperate times for people,” said Carr, a Green Party councillor.

“As long as housing is treated as a speculative investment, we will never have affordable housing for the people who live and work here.”

Vancouver has implemented a one-per cent empty homes tax and the province introduced a 15-per cent foreign-buyer tax last year. But those measures aren’t enough to tackle housing affordability head on, said Carr.

“People with wealth can afford to just pay the tax and that’s not necessarily going to solve the problem.”

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