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  • Writer's pictureSam Tabrizi

Changes to First Time Buyer Property Transfer Tax Exemptions in BC

Most notably, the property transfer tax threshold for an exemption is increased from $500,000 to $835,000.

Read below to see if you qualify:

The first time home buyers' program reduces or eliminates the amount of property transfer tax you pay when you purchase your first home. If you qualify for the program, you may be eligible for either a full or partial exemption from the tax.

If one or more of the purchasers do not qualify, only the percentage of interest that the first time home buyer(s) have in the property is eligible.

For example, if you acquired 60% interest in the property and another person acquired 40% interest but only you meet the qualifications, only your 60% would receive the exemption.

Do I qualify for an exemption?

To qualify for an exemption, at the time the property is registered you must:

  • Have either:

  • Lived in B.C. for at least a year immediately before the date you register the property

  • Filed at least 2 income tax returns as a B.C. resident in the last 6 taxation years immediately before the registration date

  • Have never owned a registered interest in a property that was your principal residence anywhere in the world at any time

  • Have never received a first time home buyers' exemption or refund

And the property must:

  • Only be used as your principal residence

  • Have a fair market value of $835,000 or less (effective April 1, 2024)

  • Be 0.5 hectares (1.24 acres) or smaller, and

  • Contain only residential improvements

If all of the above requirements are met, then the purchaser will be exempt from property transfer tax on the first $500,000 of the purchase price of the property.

Note: If you purchase the home before April 1, 2024, to receive the full exemption, the fair market value must be $500,000 or less. 

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