A total of 11 percent of Vancouver homeowners have not yet submitted their Empty Homes Tax declarations and only have before the February 2 deadline or their properties will be deemed vacant and subject to the Empty Homes Tax.
To date, 89 percent of all residential property owners have submitted declarations and the City would like to thank those who have declared early and urge the remaining 11 percent to complete the process prior to February 2 by going online to vancouver.ca/eht-declare, calling 3-1-1 or visiting City Hall.
Residential property owners who fail to declare by February 2, 2018, will have their properties deemed vacant and will be subject to the Empty Homes Tax at a rate of one percent of the property’s 2017 assessed taxable value. They will also be subject to a $250 penalty for non-declaration.
“It’s important that all owners of Class 1 Residential property in Vancouver are aware they are required to submit a declaration by February 2, or their property will be subject to the tax and additional penalties,” said Patrice Impey, Chief Financial Officer, and General Manager, Finance, Risk & Supply Chain Management.
Impey added: “Even if a homeowner occupies their property as their principal residence, rents the home to tenants, or is eligible for an exemption, they are still required to submit a declaration so the City can determine whether the Empty Homes Tax applies to them.”
The City recently initiated the audit program for the Empty Homes Tax in order to ensure homeowners are compliant with the new tax. The audit program, which is in line with best practices of provincial and federal tax authorities, utilizes a risk-based approach as well as random audits.
If homeowners’ properties are selected for audit, they will be notified by a letter requesting they provide information or evidence to support their declaration. False property status declarations may result in fines of up to $10,000 per day of the continuing offense, in addition to payment of the tax.