The speculation and vacancy tax is an annual tax and helps address the housing crisis in Vancouver. It is designed to turn empty homes into housing for British Columbians and ensure foreign owners and those with foreign income contribute to BC's tax system. This tax is different from Vancouver's empty homes tax.
How does the tax work?
This tax applies based on three key things:
- how property owners use their residential property
- the property owner's residency status
- where the property owners earn and report their income
What are the tax rates?
The tax rate varies depending on the owner's tax residency and whether the owner is a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada or a satellite family.
- 2% for foreign owners and satellite families
- 0.5% for Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada who are not members of a satellite family
These taxes must be paid by July 2, 2021.
Do all owners have to declare?
If a property has more than one owner, a separate declaration must be made for each owner, even if the other owner is a spouse or relative.
How to declare and by when?
Residential property owners in a designated taxable region must complete a declaration form each year to declare their residency status and how their property has been used. This is due on March 31, 2021.
North Vancouver residents would have received their declaration letter in February. Your declaration letter will include:
- Your letter ID, Declaration code and other information you need to declare
- a list of all the residential properties you own in the designated taxable regions
Once you have received it, you can complete your declaration online at SVT Tax Declaration.
Are there exemptions for this tax?
Over 99% of British Columbians are exempt from the SVT tax. Generally, a BC owner is exempt if the home is their principal residence. Exemptions for individuals and corporations are also available for circumstances such as home renovations and life events (divorce, hospitalization, extended absence)