Ontario, Canada brings in foreign housing tax to cool market

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Non-resident foreign nationals buying real estate in Toronto and surrounding areas will pay an additional property transfer tax of 15 percent under legislation proposed by the Ontario government.

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne made the announcement Thursday in an effort to cool a hot housing market in Canada's largest city.

It matches the 15 percent tax the Pacific coast city of Vancouver has implemented.

The average price of detached houses in the Greater Toronto Area rose to $1.21 million Canadian (US$900,000) last month. Wynne says when the market jumps 33 percent in a year they know there's a problem.

Wynne introduced other measures as well. She says they are taking aim at speculators and are tackling affordability.

The government doesn't keep statistics on the number of foreign buyers.