TREB Provides Input to City Council on Short-Term Rental Housing Regulation

TORONTO, November 14, 2017 -- With the City of Toronto’s Planning and Growth Management Committee holding public hearings, today, on proposals to regulate short-term rental housing accommodations, the Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB) has submitted formal comments on this issue to City Councillors.

“TREB supports innovation in the economy and believes that, with fair and equitable regulatory oversight, the home sharing economy can provide valuable economic benefits; however, it is important to ensure that new practices do not have unintended negative consequences on public policy priorities, and that regulation and taxation is applied in a fair and equitable manner”, said Tim Syrianos, TREB President.

TREB’s submission to Toronto City Councillors supports the principle of the sharing economy, but raised various concerns that it believes should be considered by City Council.  In particular, TREB shares concerns that have been raised by municipalities, and others, about the impact of the home sharing economy on the supply of affordable rental housing, and potential other unintended consequences such as impacts on surrounding property owners and/or tenants.

“The supply of affordable housing in Toronto and across the GTA is one of the most significant issues facing our region. Municipal decision makers must consider this priority when reviewing potential regulation of short-term rental housing. The City’s proposal to limit short-term rental housing to a principal residence is an interesting approach that deserves consideration,” said Syrianos.

TREB has also noted that, in the spirit of fair and equitable taxation and regulation, City Council should consider how best to maintain a level playing field between the home sharing economy and other options.

“There are many angles to consider with regard to the sharing economy and the short-term rental market, not the least of which is fair taxation to ensure that all providers of short-term accommodation are treated equitably,” added Syrianos.