Strong Public Support For Eliminating Toronto Land Transfer Tax

TORONTO, June 14, 2013 -- With the City of Toronto’s Executive Committee expected to review a City staff report on options for phasing out the Toronto Land Transfer Tax in coming weeks, a new poll is showing strong public support for eliminating this tax.

 

“The public continues to feel strongly that the Land Transfer Tax should be scrapped.  Torontonians know that the land transfer tax is bad for our City, and they want City Council to follow through on commitments to phase it out,” said Ann Hannah, President of the Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB).

The poll was conducted by Ipsos Reid, between May 10, 2013 and May 22, 2013, and found that,

  • Two-thirds (65%) of Torontonians support plans to eliminate the Toronto Land Transfer Tax;
  • Support for eliminating the land transfer tax with a gradual phase-out approach, as suggested by Mayor Ford, is strong (65%);
  • 90% of recent home buyers feel that they received little or no added value in municipal services for the Land Transfer Tax that they paid to the City;
  • 74% of home buyers in Toronto and the Greater Toronto Area say they are more likely to purchase a home outside of Toronto specifically because of the Toronto Land Transfer Tax;
  • 65% of home buyers who currently live in Toronto say they are more likely to leave Toronto, when they purchase their next home, specifically because of the Toronto Land Transfer Tax;

“The Land Transfer Tax has hurt Toronto for long enough. We have been speaking out against this tax for some time and we will keep doing so until City Council takes action. We’re proud of our efforts to stand up for the public and inform them on this issue, and we will keep doing so. The public expects action on this unfair tax before the next municipal election,” said Von Palmer, Chief Government and Public Affairs Officer for TREB.

A study published last fall, by the C.D. Howe Institute, found that the Toronto Land Transfer Tax is directly responsible for dampening home sales in Toronto by 16 percent.   This equates to over 5,000 lost housing sales, including condominiums.  A separate study, conducted by the Altus Group, determined that every resale housing transaction results in over $40,000 in spinoff spending on things like movers, renovations, furniture, and appliances.

“Home ownership is a worthy goal and City Council should not be making it more difficult to achieve.   City Council can, and should, move forward with a responsible phase-out of the Land Transfer Tax,” added Palmer.

Source: TREB

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Jorge Branca

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