Re: Rental housing crisis roots reach back decades, Oak Bay News, Your View, Aug. 19.
This letter has many good points but left out other important events.
In 1981, Liberal Finance Minister Allan MacEachen brought in a budget that eliminated economic incentives or tax write-offs that encouraged developers to build rental apartments. It then was no longer viable so construction stopped. Many developers involved in this business went bankrupt. Along with the Federal Liberals National Energy Program, a recession was created, especially in western Canada. High interest rates of course added to this.
Rental property is also taxed less favourably than hotels. CRA classifies rentals as a passive not active business which discourages construction. Another factor are rent controls brought in by the NDP government in B.C. Landlords income is regulated but expenses go up every year without any limit.