Ontario is considering giving all its municipalities power to levy a land transfer tax, that includes Ottawa. So what does it mean for you as a home buyer in Ottawa? Basically, municipal land transfer tax is yet another tax but the revenue of this tax goes to City of Ottawa, and the consequence of this tax will raise closing costs for property buyers, who are already paying a provincial land transfer tax.
There will be rebates for first time home buyers but the tax rate varies. The current land transfer tax for a residence worth $400,000 is around 2% when sold. The potential municipal land transfer tax would be an another additional 2%.
Since 2008 in Ontario, Toronto is the only municipality that allows to charge a municipal land transfer tax, and the revenue is used for local city budget. There is a sample calculation provided by Toronto.ca that highlights the amount of Municipal Land Transfer Tax (MLTT). For example, a house purchase price of $500,000 (excluding HST) the resulting amount for Municipal Land Transfer Tax would amount to $5,725.00.
As for City of Ottawa, Mayor Jim Watson have stated that he is not interested in the revenue source even if the province expands taxing powers to municipalities. “It’s certainly not high on my priority list” said Mayor Jim Watson. Watson also mentioned “the city hasn’t called for the province to make a change in land transfer taxing“.
If you wish to stop this tax, please let your Ontario MPP know where you stand with MLTT. One can also sign the Ontario Real Estate Board at http://www.donttaxmydream.ca/helpstop.html and find their Ontario MPP.
And for further questions to purchase a property here in Ottawa, contact me and I will go through your questions one by one…