Local
4:17 pm
Thu January 23, 2014

Congressman Higgins to seek legislation for Canadians to own U.S. homes

Western New York Congressman Brian Higgins is planning to propose legislation to make it easier for Canadians to own a home and live in the United States while working in Canada. Higgins noted that the economies of Western New York and Southern Ontario are deeply connected, and that the new "W" visa for Canadian nationals would boost the local economy and create jobs.

U.S. Congressman Brian Higgins discusses Canadian home ownership in the U.S.
Credit WBFO News photo by Chris Caya

In Niagara Falls Thursday, Higgins told reporters that average home prices in the Ontario Niagara Region exceed $280,000, while the median home value in Niagara Falls New York is $68,000.

"It's an opportunity for the United States to promote in Buffalo and Niagara Falls its residential economy," said Higgins. "An opportunity for Canadians to realize more affordable housing in Niagara Falls and Buffalo."

Higgins noted the cost of homes on the U..S. side is much lower that in Southern Ontario. However, under the new legislation, Canadians would not be authorized to work in the U.S.

"I think the disparity or high cost of average residential homes in Southern Ontario and the relatively low cost in the Buffalo Niagara region really provide for that opportunity to take advantage of a visa program that would allow Canadian's to continue work in Canada and live in Western New York," said Higgins.

Higgins is also planning to call on the New York Power Authority to remove the Robert Moses Parkway to improve the community's access to the riverfront.