To make homes more affordable, update the PTT

Each year, the BC Government sends a committee made up of MLAs from all parties to tour the province, receiving submissions and hearing recommendations on how to spend the coming BC Budget.

Making home ownership more affordable was the focus of the Board’s presentation to this committee and we made five recommendations based on our consultations with Real Estate Board members.

A Greater Vancouver household wanting to buy a modest condominium with a benchmark price of $656,900 will pay a PTT of $11,138.  (1% of the first $200,000 = $2,000 + 2% of the remainder = $9,138 = $11,138)

Recommendations

1. Increase the First-time Home Buyers’ program PTT exemption threshold to $750,000 from $525,000. This would minimally impact PTT revenue.

2. Increase the 1% PTT threshold to $750,000 from $200,000 for all home buyers.

Harriet Photo 2 screenshot

Harriet Permut, manager of government relations recommends ways to make homes more affordable

3. Index the PTT thresholds using the consumer price index and make annual adjustments for the First-time Home Buyers’ Program exemption threshold and Newly Built Home Exemption Threshold.

4. Urge the federal government to review the mortgage underwriting stress test requiring home buyers to qualify for a mortgage at the higher of either the rate they’ve negotiated with their financial institution plus two per cent or the Bank of Canada’s posted five-year rate, whichever is higher.

5. Ask the federal government to do away with the extension of the B-20 rule to uninsured mortgages which have 20% or more down payments and an extremely low rate of default.

If you have questions or comments, contact Harriet Permut, Manager of Government Relations at hpermut@rebgv.org.

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