In 2022/23 the Property Transfer Tax (PTT) brought in $2.026 billion in revenue. In 2023/24 it’s forecast to bring in $1.799 billion.

Meanwhile, potential home buyers unable to pay $1,103,900, the benchmark price of a typical townhome in Greater Vancouver in August 2023, continue to move to communities such as Maple Ridge, which has the lowest priced townhomes in the region.

If a buyer is fortunate enough to buy a modest townhome in Maple Ridge with a benchmark price of at $763,400, they’ll pay $13,268 in PTT if they’re not first-time buyers. Finding such a townhome isn't easy given the current lack of supply.

Metro Vancouver’s population is forecast to grow by 35,000 new residents each year, reaching 3.4 million by 2040. Supply problems will continue to escalate because of increasing population. The provincial government has the opportunity to show leadership and help improve Metro Vancouver’s affordability crisis.

REBGV recommendations

The Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver’s recommendations to the BC Ministry of Finance will help build more affordable homes.
Our recommendations are:
  • Conduct a comprehensive review of the PTT, which hasn’t been done since the tax was implemented in 1987.
  • Remove the PTT on any home costing less than $750,000 – for both new and resale homes.
  • Increase the First-Time Home Buyers’ Program PTT exemption threshold on resale homes to $750,000 from $525,000 to match the newly-built homes exemption.
  • Exempt presales from the PTT.
  • Index PTT thresholds using the consumer price index, and make adjustments annually for the 2% and 3% thresholds on a sliding scale tied to BC Assessment values.
  • Use PTT revenue from homes priced at more than $750,000 to provide financial incentives to renters buying missing middle homes in walkable, mixed-use, transit-oriented communities with smaller housing choices.