B.C. residents have until March 31 to register their property for exemption of the speculation and vacancy tax. (Black Press file photo)

Deadline looms to register property for exemption from speculation tax

Each homeowner, even spouses, must file a declaration

If homeowners don’t opt out of the new speculation and vacancy tax by March 31, they’ll be paying an increase of half a per cent for British Columbians and up to two per cent for foreign owners.

It’s estimated 99 per cent of British Columbians can be exempt from the tax but only if homeowners register their declaration before the end of the month.

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Registering can be done on the phone or online with the information mailed out in mid-February to owners of residential property. If a property has more than one owner – even a spouse – a separate declaration must be made for each owner.

RELATED: Seniors with unrentable homes in Belcarra, B.C., face huge speculation tax bills

The provincial government is calling the speculation and vacancy tax a key measure in tackling the housing crisis in major urban centres where home prices have risen out of reach for many British Columbia residents.

The tax is aimed at foreign and domestic speculators who own residences in B.C. but don’t pay taxes here with the intention of turning empty homes into housing opportunities for people living in the province. Along with raising revenue that will directly support affordable housing.



kendra.crighton@blackpress.ca

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