August 5, 2016
With the new 15 per cent additional Property Transfer Tax for overseas buyers of Metro Vancouver homes taking effect today (August 2), local agents are starting to report collapsing deals, according to the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board (FVREB).
The new tax, passed July 28 under Bill 28, which applies to current and future home purchases closing from today onwards, has caused much concern in the real estate industry over its retroactive nature and lack of exemptions.
The FVREB announced Tuesday morning that it is receiving numerous complaints from local REALTORS® whose overseas buyers are backing out of signed deals, choosing to walk away from their deposits over having to pay an unexpected tax bill of potentially hundreds of thousands of dollars. This is leaving local home sellers, often in purchase agreements themselves, without a buyer – potentially being forced to walk away from their own purchases and deposits if their buyer cannot be immediately replaced.
Charles Wiebe, president of the Fraser Valley Real Estate Board, stated August 2, “Consider the local seller who has proceeded with a deal involving a foreign buyer, turning down other offers and putting the work in, now being left out to dry after their arranged buyer backs out due to the tax. This impacts their next home purchase, and those buyers and sellers along the line.”