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For agents outside the city limits of Toronto who have watched colleagues lose deals over the city’s land transfer tax, news that the provincial Liberal government may be set to give all municipalities the same powers has rocked the real industry to the core.

According to news reports, the Liberal government may be set to give all municipalities the right to set the amount of municipal land transfer tax you are required to pay when buying a new property, something that currently only the city of Toronto is allowed to do.

“Ontario home buyers are already charged a provincial land transfer tax, so by adding a municipal tax, they’re essentially doubling the tax burden on Ontario families,” said Patricia Verge, president of OREA, in a statement. “If the Ontario Liberals follow through with this plan, homebuyers will be forced to pay $10,000 in total land transfer taxes on the average priced home in Ontario, starting as early as next year.”

OREA also warned that if all municipalities province-wide were allowed to set their own tax rates, it will result is lost economic activity and lost jobs with the association. They accused the Wynne Liberals of breaking an election promise.

They say that a letter received last year during the election said that Liberals “had no plans” to extend these powers beyond Toronto.

The minister of municipal affairs and housing denied any decision has been made to extend the taxing power.

“In 2014 at the AMO conference, I was asked whether I would consider looking at municipal revenue tools as part of the Municipal Act review. I gave the shortest answer possible, ‘yes.’ We are currently reviewing the Municipal Act. No decisions have been made,” said Ted McMeekin.

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