Trudeau to Tax Offshore Home Buyers

The federal Liberals will introduce a 1% tax on non-resident non-Canadians to help prevent foreign speculation from driving up housing prices.

Speaking at an announcement in Victoria, British Columbia, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said the national speculation and vacancy tax would apply nationwide and would not affect Canadians living abroad.

The proposed new measure would model a 2% speculation tax that B.C. imposes on the assessed home value for foreign owners to curb the rising price of housing.

Politicians are criss-crossing the country after Trudeau formally kicked off a campaign on Wednesday, and a major issue is expected to be the mounting cost of living. Canadians head to the polls on Monday, Oct. 21.

In 2017, Premier Kathleen Wynne's Liberal government in Ontario imposed a 15% non-resident speculation tax on residential property located in and around Toronto — Canada’s largest city — in an effort to cool off the city’s red-hot housing market.