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LETTER: Premier 'given mandate to rule, not ruin'

'My concern is will we see more homes that are simply unaffordable not just to purchase but maintain,' says letter writer
Premier Doug Ford speaks to supporters at an event in Barrie in this file photo. | Kevin Lamb for BarrieToday

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The reasoning behind Bill 23 seems to be based on the necessity of more homes, that in truth will likely be unaffordable to most of us. Do we need more housing? Certainly affordable, but in reality, I’m not sure what that means.

As we look around at the various neighbourhoods close to us, the majority of the new builds are quite large in comparison to what many of us have called “home.”

Most new homes are somewhere between 112-plus square metres per level, which is double in size to the ones we grew up in at about 56 square meters per level. As I understand, the sizing of the homes has been left up to the decision of the developers, which means they can build whatever works for them.

This may not be realistic to suggest, but perhaps it’s time for the developers and governments to compromise to the size of floor areas. We need more housing, fast, but do we need McMansions?

I’m sure the majority of people buy these homes because that is what is available. Smaller homes could afford larger yards rather than a yard that fits a barbecue, which would give us more space to enjoy the outdoors. They should also be much cheaper to build, consume fewer utilities and should offer a lesser tax bill. Build a percentage of large homes, but give us homes we can afford to buy and maintain.

To me, where this plan is going is simply reckless. I understand that new arrivals to our country will need housing, but can they pay upwards of $1 million for shelter? I see online comments from visitors to our beautiful country that Canada is expensive, and we know that.

A mortgage on a $750,000 home now is quoted at about $3,500. Monthly. That is a basic cost. Isn’t our home supposed to be equal to 25 per cent of our monthly income? How many of us are earning even $8,000 monthly, let alone $14,000 monthly to offer affordability.

My concern is will we see more homes that are simply unaffordable not just to purchase but maintain. I fear the Doug Ford government has simply let the genie out of the bottle and in doing so, is willing to ruin our environment, destroy relics from our past, ignore the wants of the Indigenous, take away the rights of ethnic organizations by eliminating the protections that have always been there for them.

Mr. Ford, you were given a mandate to rule, not ruin. I’m aghast.

Gordon H. Crawford