Here are a few examples how REALTORS(r) have been working behind the scenes to lobby the federal government to protect the rights of consumers, and the real estate industry in general:
- 1981 - present: Advocating policies that ensures real estate property rights and ownership has always been part of CREA's mission statement. CREA led the private sector campaign to include the protection of property rights in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Although this turned out to be impossible CREA did convince the Mulroney government to include it in the ill fated "Charlottetown Accord. Since that time, CREA has worked to keep property rights in the public forum.
- 1983 - present: CREA has been actively involved in pre-budget consultations with the Minister of Finance. this has allowed CREA the opportunity to champion many items over the years including getting a level playing field for small as well as large investors.
- 1984: Deficit Reduction: CREA lobbied hard for deficit reduction during several budgets in the 80's ultimately leading to the elimination of deficit spending by the federal government for many years which ultimately allowed interest rate to drop which led to making home ownership easier for all Canadians.
- 1986-1991: GST and the "Trade up" tax: When GST was first introduced CREA lobbied to have it reduced from the originally planned 9% to 7%. CREA, working with other national groups made sure the "trade-up" portion of the GST did not become policy as originally planned.
- 1989 - Present: In 1989 CREA started lobbying for the Home Buyers Plan to assist people buying their first home. This was finally introduced in the 1992 budget. Last year CREA successfully had it increased from $20,000 to $25,000.
- 1995 - 2000: Improved Mortgage Disclosure: Lobbying buy CREA eventually led to the updating of the antiquated Interest Act to make it fairer to consumers.
- 2000-2002: Improved Property Rights Protection: CREA lobbied for fairer compensation for property owners whose land was restricted in use for the common good. This included expropriation of private property as well.
This is just a sampling of the issues CREA has tackled to try to make ownership of property in Canada something that is fair, equitable, and affordable for all Canadians. CREA continues to lobby the government in various ways including PAC days when REALTORS(r) from all over Canada come to Ottawa to meet with their MP's and express concerns over property related issues in their home towns.m