July 12, 2016

Vancouver’s new tax on vacant homes “will be a disaster” — Here’s a better way to fix city's housing crisis

Christopher WilsonRebel Commentator

On Monday, BC Finance Minister Mike de Jong announced changes to the Vancouver charter, to allow the city to implement, enforce, and collect a vacancy tax on the over 10,000 empty properties within the city. This is an attempt to increase the supply of rental housing, which currently sits at 0.6 per cent.

Jordan Bateman of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation explains why this new tax will be almost impossible to enforce.

For one thing, how will "vacant" be defined?

Bateman predicts that some property owners will attempt to game this exercise in social engineering.

There are currently over one hundred taxes, fees and regulations on new home construction in Vancouver.

Why not abolish some of these and put the market to work instead?

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commented 2016-07-13 01:49:06 -0400
Well may as well tax people on the home they wish they owned.
commented 2016-07-13 01:30:10 -0400
Flooding Vancouver (Lower Mainland) market with more housing to bring down the prices will never work, for 2 reasons:
1. There’s already very little vacant space left and whatever is left should be preserved as green space for this city desperately needs more open space to breath, it’s already too dense, our roads are already clogged with traffic Vancouver has the worst traffic congestion in Canada (second ,after LA, in North America) transit system is inadequate, more housing, more people are going to add more to the woes of this city.
2. Even if you flood the market with more housing the Chinese & Indians, with their insatiable hunger for real estate and deep pockets, would buy them before it even hits the market.

The only sane solution to this problem is to curb the number of immigrants per annum by at least 70%.
The annual intake of 680,000 individuals (330K new immigrants, 50K refugees, 150K TFW, 150K students, many of these TFW & students will stay forever in Canada and would never leave after expiration of their visa) is absolutely unsustainable.

I am sorry to say but this report aligns more with the perspective of a land developer or speculator/flipper than any long time residence of this city.
commented 2016-07-12 19:55:28 -0400
“Vacant home tax” heh, sounds in line with the commie agenda – before they’re done you’ll be paying property tax surcharges on “empty rooms” in your home – to fulfill their agenda 21 occupation density requirements – you will probably get a rebate the amount of your empty room surcharge if you take in some 3rd world migrants the city/prov/feds can’t provide housing for.
commented 2016-07-12 19:12:56 -0400
Yes, supply and demand… cannot get around it. Either increase the supply or reduce the demand. I propose rounding up all the lefties, moving them to Vancouver Island and have them declare independence.
commented 2016-07-12 18:52:21 -0400
my suggestion will never happen because its not in the banks best interests
commented 2016-07-12 18:48:24 -0400
vacancy is low here because here’s a geography lesson… we are bordered by mountains… they can’t carve out the mountains… if you wanna live in a post card you pay what it costs to live here. International destination, Canada, a safe country to launder your foreign blood money, foreign LTD companies can buy and sell in under 6 months and pay no tax… but flippers need to live there a year…wtf?!?!? Why do you think it’s outta control….duh!!!

It’s simple… cut tax’s on Canadian’s and raise the tax on foreign purchases, oh wait, foreign investors aren’t taxed today… and the whole rise dates back to Expo and Hong Kong going back to China ownership at the Millennium… there were enough condo’s built then for the next 15 years…they all sold but had 30% occupancy as the escape path in case Hong Kong went to hell and their millionairs needed a way out. Add to that a house at 1.6M is nothing compared to a 600 sqft flat in Hong Kong being worth 3 million…… Simple solution to try and slow it, Create a 35% tax for anyone that’s not a Canadian already wanting to buy in and an additional 35% tax if they want to sell in under 2 years and take their money out. of Canada.
commented 2016-07-12 18:38:58 -0400
It’s a stupid tax… if you don’t make over 100k annually as a family simply don’t live here
commented 2016-07-12 18:22:48 -0400
y is vacancy rates so low egh ! too many immigrants coming in
commented 2016-07-12 17:49:52 -0400
Its a ‘citizen’ driven idea which, of course, the politicals will jump on this right away. The politicals are only wishing they’d thought of this and a long time ago…

In Hongcouver you are NOT the owner of your property even tho you bought and paid for it. You cannot saw down trees, you cannot paint your house outside of what your neighbours thinks is acceptable. If you want to make changes then you have to basically get permission from neighbours and city government before acting. So now if you buy a home there with YOUR money, you will be forced to live in it, rent it or pay a penalty. Wonder if the city will pay for all the damages tenants tend to leave??? Somehow I doubt it.