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Vacant Unit Tax is a 'misguided attempt to deal with the housing crisis': Ottawa Small Landlords Association

All owners must submit a declaration by March 16 even if the property is their main residence, and residents who own more than one home must submit a declaration for each one.
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The City of Ottawa's new Vacant Unit Tax is a way to create added revenue for affordable housing, but some of the numbers just don't quite add up. 

That's the sentiment shared by the Ottawa Small Landlords Association. 

The City of Ottawa's Vacant Unit Tax asks people to submit a property status declaration for homes they own. 

All owners must submit a declaration by March 16 even if the property is their main residence, and residents who own more than one home must submit a declaration for each one.

Units that are vacant for at least six months of the year would be charged an extra fee of one percent of the property's assessed value. 

"We think this is a very misguided attempt to deal with the housing crisis in Ottawa," said Stuart MacPherson with the Ottawa Small Landlords Association on The Sam Laprade Show on Jan. 18. 

He said that recent reports have showed that Ottawa's housing crisis is a lack of housing, and data released late last year revealed that over 10,000 homes would be needed to address the existing shortage, while almost 90,000 homes are needed to meet the projected number of households. "

MacPherson said it the program is expensive way of dealing with the housing problem that actually won't serve as a solution. 

"When I do the math, I don't see any money there for affordable housing because they are spending millions in administering the tax," he said. 

Listen to the full interview with Stuart MacPherson below:


 





About the Author: Anil Jhalli

Anil Jhalli is CityNews Ottawa's digital editor
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