Investors miffed by suggestion government should curb domestic investing

by Justin da Rosa on 10 Jun 2016
A big bank has implored the government to crack down on Canadian speculative investors, but one veteran argues that is the wrong approach.

“As an investor it’s a little disappointing because I think there should be a difference between a Canadian address investor or buyer and a foreign buyer,” Sahil Jaggi, a Toronto-based investor, told Canadian Real Estate Wealth. “So if a foreign investor is buying into Canada, I think it’s OK to place those rules in just to make sure we’re controlling the market, we are having some kind of a rule to make sure that foreign investors have to pay a premium, maybe pay extra taxes.”

Bank of Montreal Economist Sal Guatieri recently suggested speculative investors are inflating the real estate markets in both Toronto and Vancouver. He also suggested the government take a look at that influence and take measures to reduce its impact.

“The sooner that governments can provide a clearer picture of how much speculative investment is driving these price moves and take meaningful action to curb the excesses, the better the chance of avoiding a messy outcome,” Guatieri said in a recent note.

However, trying to cool the market by placing further boundaries in front of Canadian investors is not the issue the government should be tackling, according to Jaggi.

“I can see where the government is coming from because they want to make sure that properties are not over … people are not being overpriced but to have an equal rule placed for Canadian business running investor and put them in the same category as a foreign investor might be a little disappointing to see,” he said. “I think it would be good if the government can separate the two.”

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