As our Nation, our Province and our City make plans to reopen, we must recognize that the construction industry has the potential to be one of our greatest tools to help reboot the economy. However, in order for this tool to be effectively utilized, governments must be willing to help, rather than hinder, those looking to build in our city.
When manufactured goods such as electronics, or household items are mass produced, they typically drop in price due to increased production efficiency. Unfortunately, when things are built (i.e. homes, schools, hospitals, etc.) increased production tends to result in increased costs and end prices tend to go up instead of down. For example, in the case of the residential construction sector, any gains due to production efficiency are typically overshadowed by increased government regulations, development charges, or reduced public investment in infrastructure. In addition, policies such as the mortgage stress test makes homeownership unattainable for many individuals and families. Yet now more than ever, it is impossible to ignore the significance of having a place to call home. Governments must realize that one of the best ways to get this economy rolling again, will be to help the construction industry get building. This may mean investing in the necessary infrastructure to help get projects going or creating incentives for citizens to invest in a new home or working to reduce the regulations which are making houses excessively expensive and cumbersome to build.