Property Transfer Tax Exemption Updates

The real estate landscape in British Columbia is set to undergo a significant transformation, thanks to the recent announcements in the 2024 provincial budget. Among the key changes are updates to the Property Transfer Tax (PTT) framework, particularly affecting First-Time Home Buyers (FTHB) and those interested in newly built homes.

1. First-Time Home Buyer (FTHB) Exemption:

The budget increases the Fair Market Value (FMV) threshold for the FTHB exemption from $500,000 to $835,000. This means that properties with an FMV below $835,000 will be exempt from PTT on the first $500,000, with PTT payable only on the difference between the FMV and $500,000.

For example, if a property's FMV is $700,000, the PTT paid would be 2% of $200,000, resulting in a total savings of $8,000 for the purchaser. Properties with an FMV between $835,000 and $860,000 will receive a partial exemption, although specific details of this exemption are yet to be confirmed by the BC government. Properties with an FMV over $860,000 will not qualify for the FTHB PTT exemption.

2. Newly Built Home Exemption:

Effective April 1, 2024, the FMV threshold for the Newly Built Home Exemption will be increased from $750,000 to $1,100,000. A partial exemption will also be available for properties with an FMV just above the threshold. The phase-out range is $50,000 above the threshold, meaning properties with an FMV of greater than $1,150,000 will not be able to claim the exemption.

These changes present new opportunities for both buyers and sellers in BC's real estate market. First-time buyers will find it easier to step onto the property ladder, while those interested in newly built homes will have more options within a favourable tax framework.