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Stephen Harper

Stephen Harper

Former Prime Minister

September 29th, 2015

The Conservatives are setting a target of creating 700,000 new homeowners by 2020.

Party leader Stephen Harper says a combination of previous tax breaks and new promises makes that a realistic goal.

They include commitments made on this campaign to expand the home buyers' plan, establish a permanent home renovation tax credit and measures to address foreign ownership of Canadian residential real estate.

Harper says home ownership provides Canadians with financial stability and strengthens communities.

According to information provided by the party, the target would raise Canada's home ownership rate to approximately 72.5 per cent. The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp., citing information from Statistics Canada's National Household Survey, says the home ownership rate was 69.0 per cent as of 2011, the most current data available.

September 21st, 2015

"I know everybody points out that debt levels, mortgage borrowing are way up. It's up because interest rates are low. Asset levels relative to income are actually way up in this country and delinquency on mortgage loans, debt-servicing costs are at near-record lows in this country. Contrary to mythology, while there's no doubt there are some people who are overextended, the Canadian housing market is very strong."

"More Canadians own their house today than ever before, and I think the combination of job creation we've had, optimism people have for the future, and low rates have enabled a lot of Canadians to expand their participation in the housing market. And I think that's a positive thing overall."

It's fairly clear 10 years of Stephen Harper were responsible for this bubble. But when the Liberals have to clean up the mess, fingers will be pointed at them and the Conservatives are in the wings waiting. Pyrrhic victory?

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September 18th, 2015

Stephen Harper said that even though some Canadians are over-extended, the overall picture is one to "celebrate" at a time of global economic instability.

"I think the housing story is a very positive story in this country," he said. "You know, you look around the world where they have seen all these crashes, a lot of them centred around the housing market. In Canada, we have seen home ownership rise to record levels."

Harper cited incentives such as increasing the home buyers' plan, tax-free savings accounts and other measures to help people invest in their homes.

What percentage of equity is owned by homeowners vs. the banks? Is it really the highest home ownership levels in the world or is it the highest debt ownership levels in the world?

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September 24th, 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper says Canada is not facing a housing crisis, despite analyst fears that the market may be on the verge of a serious decline.

Harper told a New York business audience that he did not anticipate a housing crisis in Canada, and that that there was no comparison between the Canadian housing market now and the U.S. market before the crash of 2008.

He said only small percentage of Canadian households would be vulnerable to interest rate hikes or a downturn in prices.