(Magnus Larsson/Flickr)

UBC prof says report citing $89B home equity loss a ‘grassroots movement of the rich’

Report says longtime homeowners are being taxed out of their homes by the NDP

Although an $89 billion dip in home equity across Metro Vancouver could impact recent homebuyers, longtime homeowners will see little impact.

STEPUP, which describes itself as a “grassroots non-partisan movement by concerned B.C. citizens,” released a report this week about an $89.2 billion loss in home equity across the region between April 2018 and April 2019.

Much of that loss would have been in Vancouver, at $43.6 billion.

The report was prepared by Paul Sullivan, senior partner at Burgess, Cawley, Sullivan & Associates Ltd.

Sullivan said that although Premier John Horgan’s government may be attempting to lower housing prices, “they are simply removing billions of dollars from the B.C. economy.”

“This provincial government suggests you don’t deserve to have that real estate ‘wealth’ and should pay even more, on top of rising income taxes, the highest gas prices in North America and ballooning ICBC and utility fee increases,” Sullivan said.

“The impact of the school tax surcharge on homes assessed at over $3 million, for example, means an average 35 per cent increase across Vancouver.”

But Tsur Somerville, an associated professor at the UBC Sauder School of Business, believes that “in any meaningful sense the average homeowner is fine.”

“Anyone who been in the housing market is still way ahead,” Sommerville said, pointing to Point Grey homeowners outraged by the report.

Point Grey resident Ric Pow, who was quoted in STEPUP’s report, said he and his wife have “have been taxed out of our home.”

The Pows have owned a home in Point Grey for 33 years but say their home “has lost 25% of its value since the NDP took power.”

But Somerville said homeowners who’ve been the housing market “have done so well, they’ve been so lucky in the lottery of life that I think arguing about it is somewhat socially irresponsible.”

The movement, he said, is “a grassroots movement of the rich.”

The people who will be negatively affected by this equity loss, Somerville said, are recent first time homebuyers.

“Anyone who’s bought near the peak of the market about a year ago isn’t looking at any gains, but just declines in equity.”

READ MORE: Multimillion dollar Vancouver home owners say they can’t stomach tax bump

READ MORE: Mathematician not impressed by people complaining about B.C.’s school tax

READ MORE: David Eby cancels town hall due to ‘safety concerns’ after school tax protest planned


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Former White Rock mayor, MP shares community connections via YouTube

Gordie Hogg aims to highlight those who’ve impacted South Surrey, White Rock

Surrey Fire Fighters Charitable Society doing ‘better than we were expecting’ amid COVID-19

At one point, the board thought it might have a donation shortfall of $250,000

Delta artist John Horton named to Order of British Columbia

Honour for significant contributions made to the appreciation and safety of B.C.’s coastal history

Wrong-way driver triggers multi-vehicle collision on Highway 99 in South Surrey

Police received multiple reports of vehicle heading north in southbound lanes

53 new COVID-19 cases, no new deaths cap off week of high infection rates in B.C.

Roughly 1,500 people are self-isolating because they either have COVID-19 or have been exposed to it

IHIT on scene of suspicious early-morning fire on rural Mission property

Entrance to Gunn Avenue property cordoned off while investigation takes place, updates coming

Moving on: Tanev scores 11 seconds into OT as Canucks oust Wild

Vancouver beats Minnesota 5-4 to move into first round of NHL playoffs

FURTHER UPDATE: Body removed from Maple Ridge hotel after large police presence

A large contingent of Mounties were at the Art Infiniti Hotel Friday afternoon and evening

Gene editing debate takes root with organic broccoli, new UBC research shows

Broccoli is one of the best-known vegetables with origins in this scientific haze

3 Vancouver police officers test positive for COVID after responding to large party

Union president says other officers are self-isolating due to possible exposure

New mothers with COVID-19 should still breastfeed: Canada’s top doctor

Dr. Theresa Tam made the recommendation during World Breastfeeding Awareness Week

Collapse of Nunavut ice shelf ‘like losing a good friend:’ glaciologist

The ice shelf on the northwestern edge of Ellesmere Island has shrunk 43 per cent

PHOTOS: Moving day for 110-year-old Fraser Valley heritage house

Chilliwack heritage house makes 1.7-kilometre journey to new location

Most Read

l -->