Declaration for Speculation and Vacancy Tax

All residential property owners in the designated taxable regions must complete an annual declaration for the speculation and vacancy tax. Where there are multiple owners of a home, each owner must complete a declaration. For example, if you own a home with your spouse or relative, both you and your spouse or relative must complete a declaration.

Married or common law spouses declare as individuals.

You declare as a partnership only if you're in a business partnership and you own the property on behalf of the partnership.

Note: If someone who’s deceased is on the title of the property, call us for assistance.

You must complete a declaration to claim an exemption. Over 99% of all British Columbians are exempt from the tax.

The deadline to complete your declaration is March 31.

If you're travelling or wish to complete your declaration and don't have your letter, please call us and we can assist you.

If you don’t complete your declaration, you’ll receive a tax notice charging you the tax at the maximum tax rate. You can still complete your declaration to claim an exemption even after you've received a tax notice.

If you don’t own residential property in a designated taxable region, you don’t need to complete a declaration.

How to complete your B.C. speculation and vacancy tax declaration

How to Declare and Claim Your Exemption

If you own residential property in a designated taxable region on December 31, the Province will send you a speculation and vacancy tax declaration letter in the mail by mid-February. Contact us if you’re expecting a declaration letter from us and haven’t received one by late February.

Your declaration letter will list all the residential properties you own in the designated taxable regions and will tell you how to declare and claim any relevant exemptions. The letter will be sent to you at your mailing address on file with BC Assessment.

Need to Update Your Information?

You may need to update information with the land title office, such as a new mailing address, a name change or removing someone from title. Please follow the Changes to Title processes outlined by the Land Title and Survey Authority.

If you need to update your mailing address for the speculation and vacancy tax, please also complete BC Assessment's Change of Address Notification form.

Information You Need to Declare

In order to declare, you'll need your declaration letter as it has two unique identification numbers: a declaration code and a letter ID. You’ll also need your social insurance number (SIN) to verify your identity.

The online declaration application is secure and approved to protect your information. All information entered into the application is encrypted at the time of entry.

Collection of your SIN number is a requirement to confirm your residency information, assist in identifying if you pay income taxes in Canada and verify if you're eligible to receive the principal residence exemption or other exemptions. You won't be able to complete your declaration online or over the phone if you don't provide or have a SIN.

If you’re a corporation, you’ll need your incorporation number (for example: BC123456789) and the date of incorporation.  If you’re declaring online and your incorporation number is fewer than 9 digits, add zeros after “BC” until you have 9 digits (for example: BC001234567).

When you complete your declaration online, you’ll also be asked for an email address so we can send you a confirmation message. However, you’re not required to provide an email address.

This is what your declaration letter looks like:

This image of the top portion of the speculation and vacancy tax declaration letter sent to applicable property owners shows the placement of the B.C. logo, the declaration code, the letter ID, the Declare Now stamp and website address.  This image is intended to help property owners visually recognize their declaration letter when they receive it in the mail.

How to Declare

As soon as you receive your declaration letter, you can complete your declaration through the online declaration application. You'll be guided through the exemption options for each property.

If you prefer, you can declare over the phone with the help of an agent by calling us after you receive your declaration letter. Language translation services are available over the phone.

Complete your declaration right away to claim any relevant exemptions and avoid receiving a tax notice.

Someone else can complete your declaration online for you if they:

However, if someone else is completing your declaration over the phone, you must also be present on the call. This is because protecting your personal information is important to us.

Note: The speculation and vacancy tax is distinct from the empty homes tax in the City of Vancouver.

The speculation and vacancy tax has received Royal assent in the Legislature. This information is not a replacement for the law