Vancouverites demand gov to ban foreign property investors
Vancouverites have expressed their despair for the lack of action from political leaders over rising housing prices, leading residents to lodge a petition for the restriction of foreign real estate investing in the area.
The petition website Change.org now carries a call for action from local government officials including Premier Christy Clark, Mayor Gregor Robertson and mayors and city councillors of Metro Vancouver to halt foreign investors from entering Vancouver’s residential real estate market.
“It’s time to stand up and protect our community—Vancouver is not for sale,” the petition reads. “The housing needs of Greater Vancouver residents are more important than the profit margins of foreign speculators.”
The brief petition, initiated by a resident and internet user named “JW Gamal”, however, does not offer any suggestions on how to actually stop the rise in foreign homeownership. He has so far attracted 218 supporters out of a necessary 500.
“We can’t just sit back and complain about it and do nothing. As the electorate, we should be demanding that the government do something about this to preserve our communities for future generations. If nothing is done about this now, it is entirely possible that the Lower Mainland may be substantially foreign-owned in the next 10 – 20 years,” a Vancouver resident and petition supporter Sylvia Hultman was quoted as saying by Vancity Buzz.
“No one born and raised here will be able to buy anything – the next generation will all be renting from foreign landlords who will charge exorbitant rates of rent – because they will be able to – and because we allowed them to come and buy the entire Lower Mainland.”
Meanwhile, reports earlier this week revealed that over 35 per cent of units in the Vancouver House condominium development have been sold to foreigners. In fact, Vancity said developers are even advertising Vancouver real estate developments overseas. An example was the Vancouver House ad which was seen last fall in Taipei.
A rally on 24 May at the Vancouver Art Gallery is being planned by the Vancouverites for Affordable Housing organization, the report added.