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GTA home builders being shafted on costs study says

September 30, 2019

Home builders and residential developers in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) are facing excessive charges by local municipalities when compared with other urban areas of Canada or the United States, according to a detailed study by Altus Group for the Building Industry and Land Development Association (BILD). 
The study found that for a typical single-family house the average total of all government fees, taxes and charges in the GTA is three times higher on a per unit basis than it is—on average—in six U.S. cities, and nearly twice as high as those in other Canadian urban areas.
For high-rise developments, the average per unit charges in the GTA are one-and-a-half times higher than those in the six U.S. cities, and roughly 30 per cent higher than in other Canadian urban areas.
The report shows that government fees and charges add $222,000 to the cost of an average new single-family house and $124,000 to the cost of an average high-rise apartment in the GTA.
Altus examined major Canadian cities such as Ottawa, Vancouver, Montreal and Calgary and major U.S. cities such as San Francisco, Miami, Boston, New York City, Chicago and Houston—and compared them to various GTA municipalities. The study assessed the total tax burden, as well as charges incurred based on development to enable better comparisons.
“The costs associated with building a sewer or adding a sidewalk cannot be that much different in Montreal, Ottawa or Calgary,” noted Dave Wilkes, president and CEO of BILD. “GTA municipalities should not be adding disproportionate costs on new homebuyers as a mechanism to keep property taxes low, especially when the infrastructure benefits all.”



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