New Property Transfer Tax exemptions for first-time buyers and new homes in BC

New Property Transfer Tax exemptions for first-time buyers and new homes in BC

Exciting news for first-time home buyers in Vancouver, BC!

As part of efforts to enhance housing affordability, the Government of British Columbia is implementing three significant changes to the Property Transfer Tax (PTT) framework. These changes, outlined in the 2024 provincial budget, focus on exemptions within the PTT.

Firstly, the threshold for eligibility for the first-time homebuyers’ exemption will rise from a fair market value of $500,000 to $835,000.

Under this adjustment, the initial $500,000 of the property's value will be exempt from the tax. The phase-out range for the full elimination of the exemption will extend to $860,000, while properties valued below $500,000 will enjoy complete exemption. These modifications will take effect on April 1, 2024.

These adjustments aimed at first-time homebuyers are projected to benefit approximately 14,500 individuals, doubling the previous number, resulting in potential savings of up to $8,000 when purchasing their homes.

Additionally, the exemption for newly built homes, intended for purchasers acquiring a new principal residence, will increase from $750,000 to $1.1 million in fair market value. Properties valued between $1.1 million and $1.15 million will experience a phase-out range for the exemption. This change will also come into effect on April 1, 2024.

Furthermore, a novel PTT exemption will be introduced specifically for the acquisition of new qualifying secured purpose-built rental housing buildings. These buildings must consist of at least four non-stratified apartment units and be designated for rentals for a minimum of 10 years. Additionally, all residential units within the building must be solely used for rental purposes. This unique PTT exemption will be applicable to transactions involving such buildings between January 1, 2025, and December 30, 2030. As homeownership remains unattainable for many due to soaring property prices, this policy aims to stimulate the development of more "missing middle" rental housing units.

The provincial government anticipates these various exemptions will reduce transaction costs by over $100 million per year.

Sara Esmi

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