In light of new polling results that show strong opposition, specifically among Mississauga and other "905" region residents, to municipal land transfer taxes, REALTORS are calling on the City of Mississauga to shelve its current consideration of a municipal land transfer tax.
"This poll shows that the public understands that land transfer taxes are the wrong way for municipalities to solve their financial challenges. This type of tax creates more problems than it solves," said Ann Hannah, president of the Toronto Real Estate Board, which represents 35,000 REALTORS across the Greater Toronto Area, including more than 5,000 in Mississauga.
The poll was conducted by Ipsos Reid in November 2012 and found:
- 77 per cent of Mississauga residents, and 83 per cent of all 905 residents combined, are opposed to the imposition of a municipal land transfer, in their municipality, to offset municipal deficits or to put towards increased spending on infrastructure and other city programs;
- 89 per cent of all 905 region residents planning to purchase a home in the next two years are more likely to purchase outside Toronto specifically to avoid paying the Toronto Land Transfer Tax;
- 70 per cent of Toronto residents planning to purchase a home in the next two years are more likely to purchase outside Toronto specifically to avoid paying the Toronto Land Transfer Tax.
"If levied at the same rate as the Province and the City of Toronto, a Mississauga Land Transfer Tax would cost the buyer of an average Mississauga detached home about $10,000, payable upfront. It is unfair to expect people like down-sizing seniors, or young growing families who need more space, to pay so much more than their fair share," said Hannah.
The C.D. Howe Institute recently released an analysis of the Toronto Land Transfer Tax, which shows that this tax has hurt Toronto's economy by dampening home sales by 16 per cent. In addition, the Ipsos Reid poll found that 25 per cent of the people who recently purchased a home in Toronto would have spent their land transfer tax money on furnishings or appliances, if they had not had to give it to the City, and 21 per cent would have spent it on renovations.
"Housing sales create jobs because when people move they spend money on things like renovations, movers, appliances, and furnishings. The research has proven that municipal land transfer taxes dampen home sales. Every housing sale that would be lost as a result of a municipal land transfer tax would risk Mississauga jobs," added Hannah.