all you need to know about bc's property transfer tax
How much is the PTT?
The PTT is charged on the fair market value of a property at a rate of:
- 1% on the first $200,000
- 2% on the balance up to and including $2,000,000
- 3% on the balance greater than $2,000,000
Buyers of pre-sold strata units will typically pay the PTT on the total consideration paid for the unit, not the fair market value on the date the title is registered. There are PTT exemptions for new homes (see below.)
The total consideration is the entire amount paid to acquire the property, including the price of the unit plus fees for upgrades or additions, or any premiums for the assignment of a written agreement.
Once a developer files a strata plan at the LTSA, whoever registers the transfer pays the PTT.
Effective August 2, 2016, an additional PTT charged at a rate of 15% of the fair market value applies to residential property transfers to foreign entites in Metro Vancouver.
Foreign entities are transferees that are foreign nationals, corporations or taxable trustees.
The additional tax applies on the foreign entity's proportionate share of any applicable residential property transfer, even when the transaction may normally be exempt from the PTT. This includes transactions between related individuals, a transfer resulting from an amalgamation, a transfer to a surviving joint tenant, and a transfer where the transferee is or becomes a trustee in relation to the property, even if the trust does not change. The 15% PTT does not apply to trusts that are mutual fund trusts, real estate investment trusts or specified investment flow-through trusts.
The First Time Home Buyers’ (FTHB) Program gives a PTT exemption to eligible first time home buyers.
To qualify for a full exemption, first time buyers must:
- be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident;
- have lived in BC for 12 consecutive months before the date the property is registered; or
- have filed 2 income tax returns as a BC resident in the last 6 years;
- have never owned an interest in a principal residence anywhere, anytime; and
- have never received a first time home buyers' exemption or refund.
Newly built homes
There’s a PTT exemption for newly built homes with a fair market value of up to $750,000, including a house constructed on vacant land, a new apartment in a newly built condominium building, a manufactured home on vacant land, and other newly built homes. There are also occupancy requirements.
To apply for the Newly Built Home Exemption, enter exemption code 49 on the Special Property Transfer Tax Return when the property is registered at a land title office.
If you registered a vacant lot and paid the tax, you may apply for a refund if you have:
If you need help, phone 250-387-0604 or toll-free phone Inquiry BC at 604-660-2421 and ask to be transferred to 250-387-0604.
There are many PTT exemptions, including family exemptions, for example:
If buyers don’t comply there are penalties that can be levied.
In 1987, the PTT was brought in as a luxury tax. Just 5% of homes were taxed the 2% portion (over $200,000). Today, more than 95% of homes pay the 2% portion.
Q + As
- Can I re-qualify as a first time home buyer? No.However, the federal Home Buyers’ Program allows home buyers to requalify after four years.
- Do I qualify for the First Time Home Buyers Program if I’ve never owned a property but my spouse has? Yes. It depends on the percentage of the home owned by each of the spouses.
- Guide to the First Time Home Buyers' Program (opens a 2-page PDF)
- Q & A
- Additional Property Transfer Tax on Residential Property Transfers to Foreign Entities in the Greater Vancouver Regional District
- PTT Help Centre (scroll down)
- REBGV PTT website
- BC Property Transfer Tax Office 1-888-355-2700 (Option #2)
- Here is a complete list of forms and publications.
- All Entries (288)
- Vancouver Metro Real Estate (10)
- North Shore (19)
- West Vancouver Homes (38)
- West Vancouver Strata (26)
- North Vancouver Homes (32)
- North Vancouver Strata (27)
- Community misc (13)
- Mortgage misc (13)
- Canadian Newcomers, Non-Residents (5)
- Recreational Properties (2)
- Tips (33)
- BC Market Update (11)
- BC Real Estate (2)
- April 2018 (1)
- March 2018 (11)
- February 2018 (4)
- January 2018 (15)
- December 2017 (2)
- November 2017 (6)
- October 2017 (18)
- September 2017 (20)
- August 2017 (17)
- July 2017 (14)
- June 2017 (13)
- May 2017 (8)
- April 2017 (2)
- March 2017 (10)
- February 2017 (2)
- January 2017 (2)
- November 2016 (2)
- October 2016 (5)
- September 2016 (1)
- August 2016 (12)
- July 2016 (3)
- June 2016 (1)
- May 2016 (1)
- April 2016 (3)
- March 2016 (1)
- February 2016 (1)
- October 2015 (4)
- September 2015 (2)
- August 2015 (7)
- July 2015 (9)
- June 2015 (6)
- May 2015 (11)
- April 2015 (7)
- March 2015 (4)
- February 2015 (5)
- January 2015 (7)
- December 2014 (5)
- November 2014 (4)
- October 2014 (7)
- September 2014 (8)
- August 2014 (10)
- July 2014 (4)
- June 2014 (6)
- May 2014 (1)
- April 2014 (3)
- March 2014 (1)
- February 2014 (1)
- January 2014 (1)