Ontario Releases Budget 2023

Earlier yesterday, the Hon. Peter Bethlenfalvy, Ontario’s Minister of Finance, announced Ontario’s 2023 Budget titled Building a Strong Ontario. The budget focuses heavily on strengthening Ontario’s economy and ensuring the province is investing in infrastructure to support future growth.

The government used today’s budget to introduce new policy related to mental health funding, economic success and to reiterate the action being taken through More Homes Built Faster. In this year’s budget, Ontario’s 2022-23 deficit is projected to be $2.2 billion, and the government is looking at a $1.3 billion deficit in 2023-24. OREA has summarized other highlights from Budget 2023 below:


  • The government pledged an additional $202 million to support community organizations that are delivering supportive housing and homelessness programs, with an emphasis on Indigenous communities.

Senior Supports

  • The government plans to introduce legislation that would expand the number of seniors eligible for Guaranteed Annual Income System (GAINS) payments (these payments provide seniors with monthly payments to qualifying pensioners and are on top of the federal Old Age Security pension and Guaranteed Income Supplement payments).

HST Relief for New Housing Projects

  • Ontario will be pushing the federal government to consider a proposal on potential HST relief for new housing projects through the form of rebates, exemptions, or deferrals in payments to encourage the construction of new rental units in the province.


  • Ontario will be enhancing the Immigrant Nominee Program, with a $25 million investment over three years to attract more skilled workers and tradespeople to the province.

Mental Health Supports: The government will be providing an additional $425 million over three years to connect more people to mental health and addictions services, including a five per cent increase in the base funding of community-based mental health and addictions services.

More Homes Built Faster Act, 2022

As many of our leaders are aware, the Ontario Government released their latest piece of housing legislation in 2022 (the More Homes Built Faster Act).

Some of the highlights of the Act included:

  • Addressing the Housing Affordability Task Force’s recommendation to build 1.5 million new homes over the next 10 years in Ontario (there were 96,000 housing starts in 2022; this is 30% higher than the annual average for the past 20 years)
  • Reduce government-imposed costs on new rental projects and affordable housing (OREA recommendation)
  • Explore affordable homeownership programs, like rent-to-own or co-ownership models (OREA recommendation)
  • Strengthening consumer protections for purchasers of new homes by doubling fines and extending building license suspensions to address unethical conduct by developers (OREA recommendation)
  • Pushing back on NIMBY forces by limiting the influence of groups that oppose new housing to streamline planning approvals and get houses built faster (OREA recommendation)

OREA Analysis

The 2023 budget predicts that housing starts are projected to decline from 96,000 to 80,300 this year, dropping further to 79,300 in 2024. Accordingly, OREA will continue to work diligently and lobby on key issues to ensure there is enough housing supply to meet current and upcoming demand, including:

  • Leveraging Ontario’s public lands to increase affordable housing supply.
  • Encouraging the government to revisit successful housing policy, such as the Home Ownership Made Easy (HOME) plan.
    • In the 1960s, the HOME plan saw the province purchase land across Ontario and lease it to homebuyers, allowing them to own the home (but not the land) that it was on.
    • This greatly reduced down payments and resulted in getting more people into the market.
    • After five years, the homeowner could buy the land from the government, assuming full ownership.
  • Going further to end exclusionary zoning province-wide
    • Under the current Act, a single-family home can be converted into a multi-unit dwelling but must conform with local zoning bylaws, meaning many conversions will still need special approvals.
    • OREA is encouraging the government to go one step further by rolling back exclusionary zoning for single-family lots to allow for the building of multiple units as-of-right.
  • Continue to strengthen consumer protection in real estate with the passing of the Trust in Real Estate Services Act (TRESA) and introduction of supporting regulations, specifically related to increasing professional training standards for REALTORS® through specialty certifications and penalizing bad actors by giving the regulator the ability to use Administrative Monetary Penalties for minor infractions.

Author: bramptonrealestateboard

At the Brampton Real Estate Board (BREB) we believe in the ownership of Real Estate. Our objective is to contribute to the capability and growth of our members in their endeavors by marketing all forms of real property throughout the greater Brampton, Halton Hills and Caledon marketplaces and beyond. The Brampton Real Estate Board is dedicated to providing an environment in which it’s Member REALTORS®, employees, Board of Directors, and Committee volunteers are encouraged to grow, succeed and develop in order to provide the highest level of professional conduct and service.

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