Recently, city leaders have pondered the idea of implementing a New Development Growth Fee to help pay for new suburban developments and infrastructure. It is being touted as ‘necessary’, but will it do more harm than good? Here is how Winnipeg REALTORS® respond to this suggestion:
Winnipeg New Development Growth Fee
Poll: Do YOU think Growth Fees are a good idea?
As you might expect, Winnipeg’s home builders are against the idea. They predict negative consequences if such a growth fee (a TAX by any other name) were to be implemented.
For their parts, city leaders continue to say it’s a necessary measure. The City, they claim, needs more infrastructure money to pay for the sprawling new subdivisions.
Winnipeg has been the benefit of a relatively stable real estate market. Good continued growth, fairly balanced markets and a stable economy have helped to keep our real estate market active.
Would a ‘Growth Fee’ drive developers out of the city?
Current ‘bedroom communities’ such as E. St Paul, La Salle, Niverville and Oakbank already enjoy lower property taxes. While being located only a few minutes outside of Winnipeg’s boundaries. Close enough to enjoy Winnipeg’s facilities and amenities, but without having to pay for any of the costs associated with those amenities.
Fears are that a New Development Growth Fee would further entice new home buyers to seek properties outside of the city. How will “City Hall” respond then? Add a road tax for anyone coming into Winnipeg? Put up toll-booths?
Another fear is that the growth fee, which will be approx. 7-10% of the value of the home, may stop people from building. This will have a negative effect on our housing market in a number of ways. For one, if people decide NOT to move up, they won’t be selling their current home. This will put stress on the resale market, and may lead to higher prices.
Instead of driving future Winnipeggers (and their future property tax payments) out of our city, City Hall seems to be focusing on short term gain instead of employing long-term vision. Surprise!