Federal 2021: Housing

Federal 2021: Housing

Disclaimer

The policies outlined below are incomplete and will be updated as we approach the election so be sure to check in with us before the big day. This was put together by humans and is therefore imperfect. If you spot something missing or that appears biased please let us know through the “bull” button. Thank you, and happy choosing!

The 2021 federal election is upon us and platforms are dropping left, right, and centre. Rather than throw absolutely everything at you, we here at iCanParty will present platform items based upon overall themes. Where are these themes coming from? In the early weeks of the campaign, Angus Reid polled Canadians to find out what they felt were the most important things to them in the election campaign. Using this, we can examine party platforms plank by plank based upon the themes that Canadians find most important. In the end, voters will have to settle on a local candidate and a party at large to cast their vote. In the meantime, however, you can use our system to select which items are most important to you, personally, and build your own wish list of policy!

The theme presented here is that of Housing, an item that 50% of those polled rated at least a 6 (Agree) on the usual 7-point Likert scale (ranging from Strongly Disagree to Strongly Agree). Some background context on this item: Housing prices have increased sharply across Canada in the past five years, particularly in urban centres such as Toronto and Vancouver. The National Bank of Canada reported in early August that housing affordability deteriorated by 3.2 points in Q2 of 2021, the worst deterioration of affordability in Canada since Q2 of 1994. Housing costs now account on average for 45% of a representative household’s income. The median selling price of a house has jumped $89,000 year over year from 2020. At a 10% savings rate for a representative pre-tax household income, it now takes 69 months to save up an appropriate downpayment, up from 57 in 2020. Party platform planks related to this topic are listed below; links to the full party platforms can be found at the bottom.

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  • Commit $1 billion in loans and grants to develop and scale up rent-to-own projects

  • Introduce a tax-free First Home Savings Account, allowing Canadians under 40 to save up to $40,000 toward their first home

  • Give Canadians the option of a deferred mortgage loan

  • Double the First-Time Home Buyers Tax Credit to $10,000

  • Reduce the price of CMHC (Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation) mortgage insurance by 25 per cent

  • Build, preserve, or repair 1.4 million homes in the next 4 years

  • Double commitment to convert empty office spaces into housing to $600 million

  • Make $4 billion through a Housing Accelerator Fund for cities to accelerate their housing plans, creating a target of 100,000 new middle-class homes by 2024-25

  • Increase funding to the National Housing Co-investment fund to $2.7 billion over 4 years

  • Introduce a Multigenerational Home Renovation tax credit for families adding a secondary unit to their homes to allow family members live with them

  • Introduce a Home Buyers’ Bill of Rights that: Bans blind bidding; Establishes a legal right to a home inspection; Ensures price transparency on the history of recent house sale prices; Moves forward with a publicly accessible beneficial ownership registry; Ensures lenders offer mortgage deferrals for up to 6 months in the event of job loss or other major life event; and requires real estate agents to disclose to all participants in a transaction when they are involved in both sides of a potential sale.

  • Introduce an anti-flipping tax, requiring properties to be held for at least 12 months

  • Ban new foreign ownership for the next 2 years

  • Expand vacancy tax to include foreign-owned vacant land within large urban areas


  • Build 1 million homes in the next 3 years

  • Release 15% of the federal government’s real estate portfolio for housing

  • Extend the ability to defer capital gains tax when selling a rental property and reinvesting in rental housing

  • Incentivize (using the same incentive used for donating land to ecological reserves) corporations and private land holders to donate property to Community Land Trusts

  • Establish a federal Beneficial Ownership Registry for residential property

  • Ban foreign investors not living in or moving to Canada from buying homes, for a 2 year period

  • Remove requirement for a stress test when an individual renews a mortgage with another lender

  • Increase limit on eligibility for mortgage insurance and index it to home price inflation



  • Create at least 500,000 units of affordable housing in the next 10 years, with half of it done within the next 5 years

  • Create a “fast-start fund” to accelerate the process of building units and providing access to funding for co-ops, social and non-profit housing

  • Waive GST/HST on the construction of new affordable rental units

  • Re-introduce 30-year terms to CMHC insured mortgages on entry-level homes for first time buyers

  • Double the Home Buyer’s Tax Credit to $1,500

  • Ease access to financing by offering CMHC-backed co-ownership mortgages

  • Put in place a 20% Foreign Buyer’s Tax on the sale of homes to individuals who aren’t Canadian citizens or permanent residents

  • In Coordination with the provinces, will work to create a public beneficial ownership registry to increase transparency about who owns properties



  • Reinvest progressively in social, community and truly affordable housing until the federal government reaches 1% of its total annual revenues in order to ensure constant and and predictable funding rather than on an ad hoc basis.

  • All surplus federal properties be dedicated to priority to the development of social, community and very affordable housing in order to contribute to reducing the housing crisis.

  • Tax on speculation in order to counteract the the artificial rise of the markets.

  • Reform of the system to take into account the different realities of Quebec households and increasingly family situations that are becoming more and more diversified.

  • Proceed with a financial reorganization of the various programs programs under the National Housing Strategy to create an acquisition fund. The establishment of this fund would allow cooperatives and NPOs to acquire housing buildings that are currently available in the private market, to preserve their affordability and affordable housing and turn them into affordable social, community-based and very affordable housing.

  • Ensure that Quebec receives its fair share of funding, without conditions, from federal federal homelessness programs, while demanding that the amounts allocated in the last year during the pandemic be made permanent.


  • Declare housing affordability and homelessness a national emergency

  • Redefine affordable housing using a better, updated formula, that accounts for regional variations across the country

  • Immediately appoint the Federal Housing Advocate, as established in the National Housing Strategy Act.

  • Establish a national moratorium on evictions

  • Create national standards to establish rent and vacancy controls

  • Provide a retroactive residential arrears assistance program to protect Canadians at risk of eviction or of being driven into homelessness due to accumulated rent arrears

  • Strengthen regulation to limit foreign investment and end predatory practices in residential real estate

  • Raise the “empty home” tax for foreign and corporate residential property owners who leave buildings and units vacant

  • Assess the role of real estate investment trusts (REITs) in Canada’s housing market

  • Close tax haven loopholes that allow foreign investors to hide the names of beneficial owners of properties in Canada

  • Crack down on money laundering in Canadian real estate.

  • Reinvest in affordable, non-profit, co-operative and supportive housing

  • Protect the existing stock of affordable housing by funding the purchase of buildings by non-profit and cooperative affordable housing organizations

  • Expand the Rapid Housing Initiative to bring new affordable and supportive housing onstream without delay

  • Invest in construction and operation of 50,000 supportive housing units over 10 years.

  • Build and acquire a minimum of 300,000 units of deeply affordable non-market, co-op and non-profit housing over a decade.

  • Create a Canada Co-op Housing Strategy and update the mechanisms for financing co-op housing, in partnership with CMHC, co-op societies, credit unions and other lenders.

  • Require covenants to ensure that subsidized construction remains affordable over the long term

  • Restore quality, energy efficient housing for seniors, people with special needs and low-income families, by providing financing to non-profit housing organizations, cooperatives, and social housing to build and restore quality and affordable housing.

  • Implement integrated housing, so that everyone can afford to live in the communities in which they work and under quality conditions

  • Restore tax incentives for building purpose-built rental housing, and provide tax credits for gifts of lands, or of land and buildings, to community land trusts to provide affordable housing.

  • Remove the “deemed” GST whenever a developer with empty condo units places them on the market as rentals

  • Re-focus the core mandate of Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) on supporting the development of affordable, non-market and cooperative housing, as opposed to its current priority of supporting Canadian lenders to de-risk investment in housing ownership,

  • Appoint a Minister of Housing to meet the needs of affordable housing that are unique to each province, oversee its implementation in collaboration with provincial ministers, and build on other aspects of the housing and homelessness crisis in Canada to tackle these issues.

  • Increase access to housing for people with disabilities.

  • Require that housing developments that receive federal funding must ensure that 30% of all units in each development must be deeply affordable and/or available to people with disabilities and special needs.

  • Develop a strategy to face housing challenges in rural areas

  • Guided by First Nations, Inuit and Metis Nation, develop inclusive and culturally appropriate Urban Indigenous Housing Strategies
  • Reinvest in housing for Indigenous communities

  • Support existing youth shelters and other infrastructure through federal grants

  • Invest in the creation of new youth shelters in urban and small urban centers across the country which would work on a needs-driven and community-centric approach.

  • Remove shelter maximum stays for youth.

  • Provide on-site and remote access guidance counselling and therapy for youth suffering from homelessness.

  • Provide optional relocation services for rural youth suffering from homelessness to ensure that they have access to youth shelters and other infrastructure.

  • Support and invest in the co-operative model for youth housing.


  • Substantially reduce immigration quotas, from about 400k planned by the Liberal government, down to 100k-150k per year. This will help reduce demand for housing and cool down these markets, especially in the large cities where most immigrants settle.

  • Modify the Bank of Canada's inflation target, from 2% to 0%. This will cool down inflation in all sectors, including housing.

  • Stop funding social housing, which unfairly competes with private developers and has historically been a financial, social and urban planning disaster in every city where it’s become widespread.

  • Privatize or dismantle the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), a mammoth government agency that fuels the housing crisis instead of helping to cool it down.

  • Work with provinces to curb speculation and money laundering by foreign non-resident buyers in Canada's land and housing markets.


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  • Commit $1 billion in loans and grants to develop and scale up rent-to-own projects

  • Introduce a tax-free First Home Savings Account, allowing Canadians under 40 to save up to $40,000 toward their first home

  • Give Canadians the option of a deferred mortgage loan

  • Double the First-Time Home Buyers Tax Credit to $10,000

  • Reduce the price of CMHC (Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation) mortgage insurance by 25 per cent

  • Build, preserve, or repair 1.4 million homes in the next 4 years

  • Double commitment to convert empty office spaces into housing to $600 million

  • Make $4 billion through a Housing Accelerator Fund for cities to accelerate their housing plans, creating a target of 100,000 new middle-class homes by 2024-25

  • Increase funding to the National Housing Co-investment fund to $2.7 billion over 4 years

  • Introduce a Multigenerational Home Renovation tax credit for families adding a secondary unit to their homes to allow family members live with them

  • Introduce a Home Buyers’ Bill of Rights that: Bans blind bidding; Establishes a legal right to a home inspection; Ensures price transparency on the history of recent house sale prices; Moves forward with a publicly accessible beneficial ownership registry; Ensures lenders offer mortgage deferrals for up to 6 months in the event of job loss or other major life event; and requires real estate agents to disclose to all participants in a transaction when they are involved in both sides of a potential sale.

  • Introduce an anti-flipping tax, requiring properties to be held for at least 12 months

  • Ban new foreign ownership for the next 2 years

  • Expand vacancy tax to include foreign-owned vacant land within large urban areas


  • Build 1 million homes in the next 3 years

  • Release 15% of the federal government’s real estate portfolio for housing

  • Extend the ability to defer capital gains tax when selling a rental property and reinvesting in rental housing

  • Incentivize (using the same incentive used for donating land to ecological reserves) corporations and private land holders to donate property to Community Land Trusts

  • Establish a federal Beneficial Ownership Registry for residential property

  • Ban foreign investors not living in or moving to Canada from buying homes, for a 2 year period

  • Remove requirement for a stress test when an individual renews a mortgage with another lender

  • Increase limit on eligibility for mortgage insurance and index it to home price inflation



  • Create at least 500,000 units of affordable housing in the next 10 years, with half of it done within the next 5 years

  • Create a “fast-start fund” to accelerate the process of building units and providing access to funding for co-ops, social and non-profit housing

  • Waive GST/HST on the construction of new affordable rental units

  • Re-introduce 30-year terms to CMHC insured mortgages on entry-level homes for first time buyers

  • Double the Home Buyer’s Tax Credit to $1,500

  • Ease access to financing by offering CMHC-backed co-ownership mortgages

  • Put in place a 20% Foreign Buyer’s Tax on the sale of homes to individuals who aren’t Canadian citizens or permanent residents

  • In Coordination with the provinces, will work to create a public beneficial ownership registry to increase transparency about who owns properties



  • Reinvest progressively in social, community and truly affordable housing until the federal government reaches 1% of its total annual revenues in order to ensure constant and and predictable funding rather than on an ad hoc basis.

  • All surplus federal properties be dedicated to priority to the development of social, community and very affordable housing in order to contribute to reducing the housing crisis.

  • Tax on speculation in order to counteract the the artificial rise of the markets.

  • Reform of the system to take into account the different realities of Quebec households and increasingly family situations that are becoming more and more diversified.

  • Proceed with a financial reorganization of the various programs programs under the National Housing Strategy to create an acquisition fund. The establishment of this fund would allow cooperatives and NPOs to acquire housing buildings that are currently available in the private market, to preserve their affordability and affordable housing and turn them into affordable social, community-based and very affordable housing.

  • Ensure that Quebec receives its fair share of funding, without conditions, from federal federal homelessness programs, while demanding that the amounts allocated in the last year during the pandemic be made permanent.


  • Declare housing affordability and homelessness a national emergency

  • Redefine affordable housing using a better, updated formula, that accounts for regional variations across the country

  • Immediately appoint the Federal Housing Advocate, as established in the National Housing Strategy Act.

  • Establish a national moratorium on evictions

  • Create national standards to establish rent and vacancy controls

  • Provide a retroactive residential arrears assistance program to protect Canadians at risk of eviction or of being driven into homelessness due to accumulated rent arrears

  • Strengthen regulation to limit foreign investment and end predatory practices in residential real estate

  • Raise the “empty home” tax for foreign and corporate residential property owners who leave buildings and units vacant

  • Assess the role of real estate investment trusts (REITs) in Canada’s housing market

  • Close tax haven loopholes that allow foreign investors to hide the names of beneficial owners of properties in Canada

  • Crack down on money laundering in Canadian real estate.

  • Reinvest in affordable, non-profit, co-operative and supportive housing

  • Protect the existing stock of affordable housing by funding the purchase of buildings by non-profit and cooperative affordable housing organizations

  • Expand the Rapid Housing Initiative to bring new affordable and supportive housing onstream without delay

  • Invest in construction and operation of 50,000 supportive housing units over 10 years.

  • Build and acquire a minimum of 300,000 units of deeply affordable non-market, co-op and non-profit housing over a decade.

  • Create a Canada Co-op Housing Strategy and update the mechanisms for financing co-op housing, in partnership with CMHC, co-op societies, credit unions and other lenders.

  • Require covenants to ensure that subsidized construction remains affordable over the long term

  • Restore quality, energy efficient housing for seniors, people with special needs and low-income families, by providing financing to non-profit housing organizations, cooperatives, and social housing to build and restore quality and affordable housing.

  • Implement integrated housing, so that everyone can afford to live in the communities in which they work and under quality conditions

  • Restore tax incentives for building purpose-built rental housing, and provide tax credits for gifts of lands, or of land and buildings, to community land trusts to provide affordable housing.

  • Remove the “deemed” GST whenever a developer with empty condo units places them on the market as rentals

  • Re-focus the core mandate of Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) on supporting the development of affordable, non-market and cooperative housing, as opposed to its current priority of supporting Canadian lenders to de-risk investment in housing ownership,

  • Appoint a Minister of Housing to meet the needs of affordable housing that are unique to each province, oversee its implementation in collaboration with provincial ministers, and build on other aspects of the housing and homelessness crisis in Canada to tackle these issues.

  • Increase access to housing for people with disabilities.

  • Require that housing developments that receive federal funding must ensure that 30% of all units in each development must be deeply affordable and/or available to people with disabilities and special needs.

  • Develop a strategy to face housing challenges in rural areas

  • Guided by First Nations, Inuit and Metis Nation, develop inclusive and culturally appropriate Urban Indigenous Housing Strategies
  • Reinvest in housing for Indigenous communities

  • Support existing youth shelters and other infrastructure through federal grants

  • Invest in the creation of new youth shelters in urban and small urban centers across the country which would work on a needs-driven and community-centric approach.

  • Remove shelter maximum stays for youth.

  • Provide on-site and remote access guidance counselling and therapy for youth suffering from homelessness.

  • Provide optional relocation services for rural youth suffering from homelessness to ensure that they have access to youth shelters and other infrastructure.

  • Support and invest in the co-operative model for youth housing.


  • Substantially reduce immigration quotas, from about 400k planned by the Liberal government, down to 100k-150k per year. This will help reduce demand for housing and cool down these markets, especially in the large cities where most immigrants settle.

  • Modify the Bank of Canada's inflation target, from 2% to 0%. This will cool down inflation in all sectors, including housing.

  • Stop funding social housing, which unfairly competes with private developers and has historically been a financial, social and urban planning disaster in every city where it’s become widespread.

  • Privatize or dismantle the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), a mammoth government agency that fuels the housing crisis instead of helping to cool it down.

  • Work with provinces to curb speculation and money laundering by foreign non-resident buyers in Canada's land and housing markets.