Madam Speaker, I will be sharing my time with the hon. member for Louis-Saint-Laurent.
After eight years of the Prime Minister, housing costs have doubled, rent has doubled, mortgage payments have doubled and the down payment needed for a new average home has doubled. Before the Prime Minister, it took 25 years to pay off a mortgage. Now, in Toronto, it takes the average family 25 years to save for a down payment.
Before the Prime Minister, one could buy an average home for a modest $450,000 and at significantly lower interest rates. Now, one has to pay over $700,000 for the exact same home with the exact same walls, roof, windows, floors and basement, and one must pay much higher rates on the mortgage for that home. Under the Prime Minister, housing costs 50% more in Canada than it does in the United States, and one can buy a castle in Sweden for the price of a two-bedroom, rundown home in Kitchener.
After eight years of the Prime Minister, Toronto now ranks as the worst housing bubble in the world, according to the UBS bank. Vancouver is now the third most overpriced housing market in the world when we compare average income to average house price. It is worse than New York; London, England; and Singapore, a tiny island with 2,000 times more people per square kilometre. All these places have more money, more people and less land, and yet somehow, miraculously, their housing is more affordable.
According to the IMF, Canada now has the riskiest mortgage debt in the entire G7. We have by far the most indebted households, all of which have had to take on these massive mortgages to pay for the exorbitant house prices that have skyrocketed under the Prime Minister.
Speaking of those rocketing prices, they have two causes. One is that the Prime Minister had the central bank print $600 billion. When it does that, it does not just drop the money out of airplanes or deliver it to the PMO in a Brink's truck, as much as he might like for that to be the case. Rather, it buys government bonds on the secondary market, which makes it easier for the government to borrow and spend, which the Prime Minister loves, but it also has the by-product of massively increasing the cash in the financial system that gets lent out in mortgages, disproportionately to the wealthy insiders who have connections to the banking system, who then bid up housing prices. During that money-printing orgy, we saw the number of homes bought by investors literally double in a year and a half, a 100% increase, which led to the fastest increase in house prices ever recorded in Canadian history.
The second cause deals with supply. After eight years of the Prime Minister, Canada has the fewest homes per capita of any country in the G7, even though we have the most land to build on. Why? It is because we have the second-slowest building permits out of all 40 OECD countries. Only the Slovak Republic is slower.
So what are the solutions to that? One, we need to cap spending and cut waste to balance the budget and bring down interest rates and inflation. Two, we need to get rid of the government gatekeepers who block home building.
Now, the government has come up with this idea of a housing accelerator fund. It is a $2-billion program. The Liberals announced it a year and a half ago and so far it has not built a single, solitary home anywhere. They had one photo-op announcement, where there was a promise that it would eventually build 2,000 homes. Well, it sounds like a lot, but according to CMHC, we need to increase the projected home building by 3.5 million homes between now and 2030. In other words, even if they keep their promise of building 2,000 more homes in London, Ontario, they would have to do that same announcement and execute the announcement, with results, 1,500 times to get up to the 3.5 million homes we need.
Now, there is a very big difference. A lot of the media tried to say that the Prime Minister's accelerator is an attempt to copy my housing plan. It might be the same in messaging and rhetoric, but in practice it is totally different, and here is the difference: He is funding bureaucracy; I will fund results.
Let me use a hockey analogy. A team wins the Stanley Cup if it scores the most goals in the most games, gets into the playoffs, wins the most games in every series and ultimately win the finals. Winning is about putting pucks in nets.
Can members imagine if, instead, the referee said that he was going to give points based on the practices of the team members? He would go to the Calgary Flames' Saddledome and say that they have an excellent skating drill, so he is going to give them 10 points. Then he would go over to the Maple Leafs, which may be a bad example, and say that they have an excellent pep talk before each game, and he is going to give them a few points. Then he goes over to the Vancouver Canucks and says that they do an excellent job of practising their shooting accuracy on the ice, and gives them a bunch of points.
However, he does not realize that, when he has turned his back, the Flames hockey team might be having a beer and pizza party every night that fattens up the teammates and makes them less successful on the ice, or the Toronto Maple Leafs spend more time on the golf course than they do on the ice, or the Vancouver Canucks do not practise when the referee is not looking. Therefore, when the referee is not looking, he does not know what they are doing.
Let us bring this example to housing. The Liberals want the Minister of Housing to go around to judge the practices, as he sees them in his eyes, of each municipality and then give them lump sum grants based on what practices they take. They might speed up permits one day when the minister is looking, but then they might increase the cost of development charges on the next, or add a new site plan process that adds a bunch of extra time after it has this big grant and photo op from the minister. In other words, it might not build more houses. Just today the minister was forced to cancel a photo op with the City of Vancouver because it is proposing to raise its development charges on new home building, even though last week it made a favourable announcement.
What is the solution to this? Why do we not judge our cities and their approval processes by how many homes they complete, or in other words, how many pucks go in the net. That is judging by results. My common sense approach is very simple math. I would require every city in Canada to boost housing completions by 15% per year. If it beats that target by 1%, it gets 1% more money. If it misses it by 1%, it gets 1% less money. If it beats it by 10%, it gets 10% more money, but if it misses it by 10%, it gets 10% less. It is very simple: build more, get more. Incentives work. That is why we give kids who perform best on their exams a higher mark to take home on their report card to their parents. That is why employers pay bonuses to high-performing employees. That is how the real world works.
I am not going to tell the cities how to do it. As long as they safely allow for builders to complete 15% or more home building every single year, they would get more money from my government. By the way, they would generate more money for my government because more home building means more people working, which means more people paying taxes.
All of this is common sense. My government would be paying for results across the board. We would clear away the bureaucracy and get things done. Those who help me get things done would be rewarded. Speaking of rewards, just like with the Stanley Cup, those superstar municipalities that massively increase home building would be eligible for an even bigger home-building top-up, a massive building bonus, so they can take that money and use it to service the new communities they have allowed to be built.
Some say it cannot be done, that we cannot safely build homes faster. The Brits and Americans approve building permits three times faster than us, and they do it just as safely. It is not just them. Thank God the Squamish people in Vancouver do not have to follow Vancouver city hall rules because they are on a reserve. Can members guess what they did? They approved 6,000 new homes on 10 acres of land. That is 600 homes per acre. Now people will have affordable homes built that would not have been possible if the gatekeepers had been in the way.
Imagine if we could have stories like that right across the country. That is what my plan, the building homes not bureaucracy act, would enable. Let us build homes of the future. Let us base it on the common sense of the common people united for our common home, their home, my home, our home. Let us bring it home.