Land Transfer Tax

Frequently Asked Questions about the Refund for First-time Homebuyers


I inherited my mother's home. I did not buy it. Do I qualify for the first-time homebuyers refund on another home I am buying?

To claim a refund, you cannot have owned a home, or an interest in a home, anywhere in the world. Previous ownership in a home means you do not qualify for the land transfer tax first-time homebuyers refund. The method of acquiring the home (e.g., purchase, gift or through an inheritance) is not relevant.

Read on: Refunds for first-time homebuyers – Land Transfer Tax


My mom/dad is also on title to my property at the insistence of the bank. Do I qualify for the first-time homebuyers refund?

In this situation, where a parent is also on title to a child’s property, it will be necessary to pay land transfer tax at the time of registration and apply for a refund from the Ministry of Finance.

If the parent did not acquire a beneficial interest in the property as a result of the conveyance :

  • the ministry will accept the fact that the parent was on title as a trustee for the child, and
  • the child would qualify for the newly constructed home refund, provided that evidence of the trust is submitted (e.g., a letter from the bank confirming that the parent is on title for mortgage purposes).

Read on: Conveyances involving trusts


My partner and I are buying a home together. I have owned a home, but he has not. Does he qualify for the first-time homebuyers refund?

Your partner's eligibility for a refund depends on whether you are spouses as defined in section 29 of the Family Law Act.

For land transfer tax purposes, spouse means either of two persons who are married to each other, or who are not married to each other and have cohabited:
  • continuously for a period of not less than three years; or
  • in a relationship of some permanence, if they are the natural or adoptive parents of a child.
    If you are not spouses, then your partner may claim a refund based on his/her interest acquired in the home.

If you are not spouses, then your partner may claim a refund based on his interest acquired in the home.

If you are spouses, your partner may claim a refund up to the maximum of $2,000 (you can claim the refund for your interest and your partner’s interest), as long as you did not own a home while you were each other's spouse. If you did own the home while you were spouses of each other, then your partner does not qualify for a refund even if you did not live in the house together.

 

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