Election 2021: Waterloo Region a 'leading example' of housing crisis
Matthew DaSilva and his fiancé are struggling with moving ahead with their lives during the pandemic.
The young Cambridge couple put their wedding on hold.
Now they’re worried their dreams of buying their first home are out of reach as they face higher prices and bidding wars.
“It’s very shocking,” said DaSilva. “Houses that we’ve might have seen one or two years ago are fifty percent higher.”
“The prices are escalating right across the country, and Waterloo Region is a leading example," said Peter Woolstencroft, a political scientist and a retired University of Waterloo professor.
Woolstencroft adds the government can do very little about the lack of supply and high demand in Ontario.
“In some ways, we’ve created a problem because we have discouraged housing or the building of suburbs in the countryside to save farmlands,” said Woolstencroft. “It’s a complex problem and I don’t know if any government or party has a real idea of how to address the issue.”
When it comes to housing and infrastructure the federal parties have their platforms for election day.
The Liberals say they will help renters become homeowners and ban blind bidding, build or repair 1.4 million homes and increase funding for affordable housing.
Meanwhile, the Conservatives are promising to build one million homes, ban new foreign ownership and spend $3 billion to renovate long-term-care homes.
The NDP’s plan includes building 500,000 affordable housing units, reintroducing a 30-year mortgage term on entry-level homes for first-time buyers and bolstering public transit and high-speed internet.
Finally, the Green party will make residential and commercial buildings more energy-efficient, require all new buildings to meet net-zero standards, and will implement net-zero public transportation.
“Obviously it’s an election and they are going to be saying a lot of stuff that may not follow through, or they may not be able to follow through,” said DaSilva.
He just hopes whoever wins will help make the price of homes and the cost of living in Cambridge and Canada more affordable.