But a recent report from realtor Royal LePage suggests the Vancouver market may be starting to bounce back. In British Columbia alone, these feelings were even stronger, with 75% in support of the tax and 74% believing foreign buyers were driving up the cost of real estate.
Home sales across Canada hit a record high in March, with the actual national average price up 8.2 per cent compared with a year ago, and Toronto prices are up a record 33 per cent.
"When young people can't afford their own apartment or can't imagine ever owning their own home, we know we have a problem", she said.
The provincial government is also considering an overhaul of its rent control policy that would expand the cap on annual rent increases to units constructed after 1991.
Some economists have warned that rent control will discourage developers from building new rental properties.
The province is also expanding rent controls and giving Toronto and other municipalities the power to impose a tax on vacant homes, something that Toronto Mayor John Tory has been pushing for.
Ontario's premier says a package of housing measures that will be announced within days will tackle both the rental and home sales sides of the real estate market.
A review of the rules governing the conduct of real estate agents.
The provincial Liberal government's housing plan contains 16 measures in all.
Neither of Ontario's opposition parties objected to any of the government's proposed measures.
Ontario's finance minister, Charles Sousa, is concerned about speculators - or "property scalpers" as he calls them - driving up house prices. Progressive Conservative Housing Critic Ernie Hardeman said the measures are moving "in the right direction".
Toronto's runaway real estate market could take a breather due to Ontario's new housing measures, but much like what transpired in Vancouver, the impact of the changes is expected to be short-lived, experts say.
The worst of these exemptions is one that allows students to apply for a full rebate of the non-resident speculation tax (NRST).
London and NY have shown that rent controls are a disincentive to building new units, because they curtail the potential return on investment for pension funds and other investors in these kinds of developments, said the business group's CEO.
Strengthen the Residential Tenancies Act, including a standard lease with multilingual information, tightening provisions for "landlord's own use" evictions, and ensuring adequate tenant compensation if evicted. "I am pleased that the government will activate surplus provincial land like the West Don Lands to create new affordable housing, something I have been urging the Premier to do for some time". It would match the 15 percent tax on foreign home buyers that the Pacific coast city of Vancouver has implemented.
He reiterated that the Canada Revenue Agency will put resources toward ensuring tax compliance but refused to accept his Ontario counterpart's request to change the taxation of capital gains on the sale of homes that are not classified as a primary residence. It also includes rebating a portion of development charges to encourage rental construction under a five-year, $125-million program.
A tax on assignments would be a good step forward to limit speculation in the new construction market.
Establishing a housing advisory group which will meet quarterly.