By Joe Vaccaro

Transformation is needed if Ontario is going to deliver 1 million new homes

Change requires work and commitment. To paraphrase Albert Einstein: Doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result is not just the definition of insanity; it condemns the outcome to failure.

OHBA and the #homebeliever campaign have been changing the conversation around Ontario’s housing market to focus on supply as the only reasonable response to our growing population and real housing needs. We know that the world recognizes Ontario as an economic destination. Beyond just the GTA, from Windsor to Ottawa, we have welcoming, safe communities with reliable infrastructure, excellent universities and access to world markets and financial resources. People are coming here and they need homes, so we require a housing system that provides options to meet their needs.  

In fact, the government tells us there will be 2.6 million more #homebelievers living in Ontario by 2031. That is the real demand that the federal, provincial and municipal governments need to respond to if we are going to get serious about housing affordability, choice and economic prosperity. 

And 2.6 million more #homebelievers means #weneed1MILLIONhomes over the next decade. That’s the outcome required by the housing system if Ontario is to meet demand, an outcome that the previous system could never deliver.

The current Ontario government recognized that the housing system they inherited was condemned to repeating past failures, and they committed to the work and attention needed to make transformational system changes.  Their plan has touched every aspect of the housing system, with more to come, with a focus and determination to match the name of the government’s signature housing bill: the More Homes, More Choice Act.

Beyond the changes to the development approvals system, there have been changes (or proposed amendments) to the Conservation Authorities Act, the remediation and excess soils framework, the New Home Warranty Program, the home-building regulator, the skilled trades and apprenticeship system, the Construction Act, prompt payment and much more.

Along the way, OHBA has been an active stakeholder, participating, proposing and responding to the government’s transformational approach. Our members have long been asking for change, and OHBA hears the membership concerns. The uncertainty that change brings can be difficult, but we are committed to support and inform our industry members along the way. 

The elephant in the room is that we need more housing supply and choice across Ontario. But instead of viewing population growth as a problem, let’s view it as an opportunity. New housing can be a cornerstone solution to climate change, the employment skills gap and the economy. 

And OHBA’s work continues to reflect our industry membership’s effort, focus and commitment to get more housing supply and choice in the market, and create communities and neighbourhoods that respond to the change happening across Ontario. We want to give #homebelievers the chance to live in the greatest province in the greatest country in the world.

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