SPECULATION TAX IN BC
What you need to know:
The tax DOES apply for 2018, only for half of the year.
All residential property owners in the taxable areas must complete a declaration, even if they’re eligible for an exemption.
Generally, BC Residents subject to the tax will be eligible for a tax credit of $2,000. Effectively, this is a rebate on the 0.5% tax on a $400,000 home. Any remainder will be taxable at 0.5%
For owners of multiple properties, this rebate can generally apply only to 1 home.
If you live in your one and only Principal Residence, you still must apply for an exemption. The government will send a declaration to you, listing each property that you own. If you do not apply for an exemption, the tax will be automatically applied to your property.
If you live in an area that is NOT effected by the tax, you will NOT have to fill out a declaration.
Reserve lands, treaty lands and lands of self-governing Indigenous Nations are not part of the taxable regions.
Some residential properties are excluded:
- An Indigenous Nation
- Housing Co-ops
- Certain Not-for-Profit Organizations
- Properties owned by Municipalities, regional districts, governments and other public bodies
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The Speculation Tax applies based on ownership as of December 31st each year.
If a residential property has multiple owners, the tax is divided among each owner, based upon their ownership share.
One month is considered a ‘long-term rental’, (see below). Six one-month rentals within one year qualifies you for an exemption.
For 2019, to exempt yourself from the tax on your second property, your property must have been rented out for at least six months of the year. Rental periods of less than one month cannot be counted toward your six-month total.
For 2018, to exempt yourself from the tax on your second property, your property must have been rented out for a least three months of the year.
If one owner of the property is exempt from the tax, the other owner is not necessarily exempt.
The Speculation & Vacancy Tax is distinct from the empty homes tax in Vancouver.
The Districts effected:
- West Kelowna
- Metro Vancouver: excluding Bowen Island, Lions Bay, Electoral Area A
- Capital Regional District: excluding Salt Spring Island, Juan de Fuca, Southern Gulf Islands
- EXCLUDING: any area that can only be accessed by air or water