Land Cartel and Housing Rights in Canada: A Critical Perspective and Community Action

Historical Significance 99

  1. Costly construction isn’t to blame for housing crisis. Costly land is | Financial Post

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Land Cartel and Housing Affordability in Canada: An Analysis and Policy Recommendations

Land cartel is a term that refers to the concentration of land ownership and control by a few powerful actors, such as corporations, governments, or wealthy individuals. Land cartel can have negative impacts on the affordability, availability, and quality of housing, especially for low-income and marginalized groups. In this essay, I will examine how land cartel operates in Canada, what are its consequences, and what are some possible solutions.

How Land Cartel Operates in Canada

One of the main drivers of land cartel in Canada is the land-use regulation system, which restricts the supply and increases the price of land. According to a study by the Fraser Institute, land-use regulations, such as zoning, density limits, and development fees, add an average of $229,000 to the cost of a typical home in Canada’s six largest metropolitan areas. These regulations are often influenced by the interests of existing homeowners, who benefit from higher property values and lower taxes, at the expense of renters and potential buyers. As a result, land cartel creates a barrier to entry and reduces competition in the housing market.

Another factor that contributes to land cartel in Canada is the influx of foreign capital and investment in the real estate sector. Large international real estate firms have bought thousands of rental units in Canada, especially in inner-city neighbourhoods such as Parkdale in Toronto. These firms use various tactics to evict tenants, increase rents, and neglect maintenance, in order to maximize their profits and sell the properties at a higher price. This displaces the existing residents, who are often immigrants, refugees, and low-income families, and erodes the diversity and social fabric of the neighbourhoods.

What are the Consequences of Land Cartel in Canada

Land cartel in Canada has serious implications for the housing affordability crisis, which affects millions of Canadians. According to the 2016 census, 1.7 million households, or 12.7% of the total, spent more than 50% of their income on shelter, which is considered severely unaffordable. Moreover, land cartel exacerbates the housing insecurity and homelessness problem, which disproportionately affects Indigenous people, racialized groups, and people with disabilities. Land cartel also undermines the human right to adequate housing, which is recognized by the United Nations and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

What are some Possible Solutions to Land Cartel in Canada

To address the issue of land cartel in Canada, there is a need for a comprehensive and coordinated policy response from all levels of government and civil society. Some of the possible solutions include:

  • Reforming the land-use regulation system to allow more market-driven and inclusive development, while protecting the environment and the public interest.
  • Implementing a national housing strategy that invests in affordable and social housing, supports renters and co-operatives, and ensures accountability and participation of all stakeholders.
  • Regulating the foreign investment and speculation in the housing market, such as imposing taxes, fees, or restrictions on non-resident buyers and owners.
  • Empowering and organizing the tenants and communities to resist eviction, advocate for their rights, and participate in the decision-making process.

In conclusion, land cartel is a complex and pervasive phenomenon that affects the housing situation in Canada. It is important to understand its causes, consequences, and solutions, and to take action to ensure that everyone has access to safe, adequate, and affordable housing.





加拿大土地卡特爾的主要驅動力之一是土地使用監管制度,它限制了土地的供應並提高了土地價格。根據弗雷澤研究所(Fraser Institute)的一項研究,土地使用法規,如分區、密度限制和開發費用,平均增加了加拿大六大都市區典型房屋的成本229,000加元。這些法規通常受到現有房主利益的影響,他們受益於更高的房產價值和更低的稅收,而犧牲了租房者和潛在買家的利益。因此,土地卡特爾創造了進入壁壘,減少了住房市場的競爭






  • 改革土地使用監管制度,允許更多的市場驅動和包容性發展,同時保護環境和公共利益
  • 實施國家住房戰略,投資於經濟適用房和社會住房,支援租房者和合作社,並確保所有利益攸關方的問責制和參與
  • 規範住房市場的外國投資和投機, 例如對非居民買家和業主徵收稅款、費用或限制
  • 授權和組織租戶和社區抵制驅逐、倡導他們的權利並參與決策過程


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