The Kelowna Chamber of Commerce has applauded the federal government for its decision to eliminate the GST from all new rental construction.
The announcement was made by the Trudeau government late last week.
Chamber chair Dan Price called the announcement "long overdue."
“We needed this years ago when the government first proposed the change. Kelowna Chamber with chambers across the country have long advocated the move,” said Price.
The chamber also continues to advocate for changes to the GST New Home Rebate system which offers rebates on the GST paid on new homes under $450,000.
It's a program that has not been updated since being introduced in 1991.
“At a minimum, the threshold levels should be adjusted to today’s dollars. Homes in Kelowna don’t average $450,000 and haven’t for some time.”
Price adds the province receives billions of dollars in land transfer taxes each year. Reducing or eliminating these fees could stimulate affordable housing projects.
Continuing to apply land transfer taxes on used inventory further erodes affordability.
Price says all levels of government need to work together to find solutions to the ongoing housing crisis facing all Canadians.
"Governments have benefited from increases in housing prices and now they are looking for ways to ensure they work with business to keep the sector sustainable. I don’t want to give up on my dream of having my kids live in Kelowna and want to do what I can to make that happen.”