Additional Property Transfer Tax for Foreign Entities & Taxable Trustees

In addition to the property transfer tax, if you're a foreign national, foreign corporation or taxable trustee, you must pay the additional property transfer tax on your proportionate share of a residential property's fair market value if the property is within specified areas of B.C. 

Your proportionate share is the percentage of interest that you're registering on title with the Land Title Office. For example, if you're a foreign entity (foreign national or foreign corporation) acquiring a 70% interest in a property, you pay the additional property transfer tax on 70% of the residential property's fair market value.

Tax Amount and Specified B.C. Areas

If the property transfer is within the following areas, the tax rate is 20% on the fair market value of your proportionate share:

The additional property transfer tax doesn’t apply to properties located on Tsawwassen First Nation treaty lands.

Transitional Rules

If the property is located in the Capital Regional District, Fraser Valley Regional District, Regional District of Central Okanagan or Nanaimo Regional District and the property transfer is registered on or after February 21, 2018, you don’t have to pay the additional property transfer tax and your property can be registered at any time if:

  • The property transfer is subject to a court order dated on or before February 20, 2018

  • The property transfer is subject to an Order Nisi of Foreclosure dated on or before February 20, 2018

  • The property transfer is subject to a written separation agreement under the Family Law Act made on or before February 20, 2018

  • The property transfer is from the personal representative of a deceased’s estate to the beneficiary and the death of the deceased occurred on or before February 20, 2018

  • The property transfer is to a surviving joint tenant when the death of the deceased occurred on or before February 20, 2018

Tax on Residential Portion of Property

The additional property transfer tax applies on only the fair market value of the residential portion of a property located in the specified areas of B.C. There are three types of properties where this may occur:

  • Property entirely classified as residential (class 1) by BC Assessment. You pay the additional tax based on the fair market value of the entire property

  • Property classified as farm land by BC Assessment because it's used for an owner's dwelling or a farmer's dwelling. You pay the additional tax on the value of the residential improvement plus 0.5 hectares of land.

  • Mixed class property that includes a residential property, such as a residential condo in a building (class 1) with commercial space (class 6). You pay the additional tax on the fair market value of the residential property (land and improvement) only.

Exemptions

In some circumstances, you may be exempt from the additional property transfer tax if you're:

Some transfers will still be subject to the additional property transfer tax even when exempt of the property transfer tax. These include:

  • A transfer resulting from an amalgamation made under the Business Corporations Act, the Canada Business Corporations Act (Canada) or a similar provision of Canada or a province

  • A transfer to a surviving joint tenant as a result of the death of a joint tenant

  • A transfer to change the registered trustee(s) for reasons that do not directly or indirectly relate to a change in beneficiaries, class of beneficiaries or trust terms

The additional property transfer tax doesn’t apply to registration of trusts that are mutual fund trusts, real estate investment trusts or specified investment flow-through trusts.

B.C. Provincial Nominees

If you're a foreign national individual who receives confirmation under the B.C. Provincial Nominee Program, you do not pay the additional property transfer tax if you claim the exemption.

To qualify for this exemption:

  • You must be a confirmed B.C. Provincial Nominee when the property transfer is registered with the Land Title Office
  • The property must be used as your principal residence
  • The property transfer must be made to an individual

Confirmed B.C. Provincial Nominees do not include:

  • B.C. Provincial Nominee Candidates in the entrepreneurial immigration stream to permanent residency
  • Individuals with a valid work permit or student visa

The B.C. Provincial Nominee is the individual named on a valid nomination certificate issued by the province. Family members, including a spouse or common law partner, are not exempt from the additional property transfer tax and must pay the tax on their proportionate share of the property if they’re also a foreign national.

If your Confirmation of Nomination has expired, you must provide proof that you applied for permanent residency before the expiration date to be considered for the exemption.

You may claim this exemption only once. If you purchase another property, you must pay the additional property transfer tax. Qualifications for every exemption claimed are reviewed.

To claim the exemption, your legal professional must attach a copy of your B.C. Provincial Nominee confirmation letter together with the property transfer tax return.

Canadian-controlled Limited Partnerships

If you’re a general partner who’s a Canadian citizen, permanent resident of Canada or a corporation that's not a foreign corporation and you’re acquiring a property on behalf of a qualifying Canadian-controlled limited partnership, you may be exempt from paying the additional property transfer tax.

Note: For the purpose of this exemption, “general partner” and “limited partner” have the same meaning as section 51 or section 80 of the Partnership Act

To qualify for this exemption, the property (land and improvements) transfer must be registered at the Land Title Office on or after June 1, 2020 and: 

  • Each general partner must be a Canadian citizen, a permanent resident of Canada or a corporation that’s not a foreign corporation

  • Each general partner and each limited partner must be a resident of Canada for income tax purposes throughout the taxation year in which the transfer occurs

  • The combined interest of all foreign limited partners in the limited partnership must account for less than half of the entitlement of all partners to share in the profits of the limited partnership

You may claim this exemption through the web-based property transfer tax return.