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Nine-in-ten support tax on foreign buyers of Metro Vancouver homes, but doubt it will be very effective

Vast majority say government should have stepped in sooner to cool the market


July 29, 2016 – Under increasing pressure from people living in Canada’s most expensive real estate market, Premier Christy Clark’s government announced this week that it will begin taxing foreign buyers of Metro Vancouver residential properties. The move is being met with overwhelming approval in that region, but also with doubts over whether this and other policy changes will do much to bring housing prices down.

A new, additional property transfer tax of 15 per cent on homebuyers who are neither Canadian citizens nor permanent residents will take effect Aug. 2. Another measure will allow the City of Vancouver to tax vacant homes in its jurisdiction.

The latest public opinion poll from the Angus Reid Institute finds Metro Vancouver residents are very supportive of these efforts – and view them as a step in the right direction – even as they remain dissatisfied with the way both local and provincial governments have responded to soaring housing prices.

angus reid real estate

Key Findings: 

  • Nine-in-ten residents of Greater Vancouver (90%) support the new tax on foreign buyers, and a similar number (87%) would support their local government asking for the power to tax vacant homes
  • Seven-in-ten (71%) say affected buyers will find loopholes enabling them to get around the new tax, while relatively few say either measure will be “highly effective” at bringing prices down or opening up more housing inventory
  • Fully eight-in-ten (82%) say the provincial government should have intervened in the housing market sooner, including three-quarters of those who voted for the B.C. Liberal Party in 2013

Link to the poll here:

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Angus Reid Institute · #1318-1030 West Georgia St. · Vancouver, BC V6E 2Y3 · Canada

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