Ontario could be in for an exodus of would-be homebuyers if affordability isn’t soon addressed, according to a new poll.

Forty-six per cent of prospective homebuyers in Ontario said they’ve considered leaving Canada’s most populous province in search of something more affordable, according to polling data released by the Ontario Real Estate Association Tuesday.

One third of respondents under the age of 29 said they are either definitely or very likely to buy outside of Ontario.

“The affordability crisis continues to crush the dream of home ownership for many Ontarians and this has been intensified by the economic impact of the pandemic,” said Tim Hudak, chief executive officer of the OREA, in a release.

“Governments need to act if we want to create future generations of homeowners and that starts with pro-growth policies that could bring affordability closer to first-time homebuyers and address the supply shortage.”

Nearly 70 per cent of respondents agree there are actions the Ontario government could take to make an impact on runaway housing costs. The ideas respondents support include cracking down on money laundering, the introduction of tax credits and incentives for renovations, increased tax rebates for first-time homebuyers, as well as the redevelopment of commercial properties into housing.

For this report, the OREA polled 2,000 Ontario residents over the age of 18 in early June.

Housing markets all over Ontario have seen massive price increases compared to pre-pandemic levels. However, in June, sales activity finally slowed down in Toronto, according to the region’s real estate board.