Construction cranes tower above condos under construction near southeast False Creek in Vancouver on February 9, 2020. A study from Canada Mortgage Housing Corp. says over 11,000 condos were added to the housing supply pool in Metro Vancouver last year, spurred in part by taxes on empty homes. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Construction cranes tower above condos under construction near southeast False Creek in Vancouver on February 9, 2020. A study from Canada Mortgage Housing Corp. says over 11,000 condos were added to the housing supply pool in Metro Vancouver last year, spurred in part by taxes on empty homes. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Vacancy taxes put more rental condos in Metro Vancouver market: CMHC study

Vancouver council voted to increase empty homes tax from 1.25 per cent to three per cent for next year

The Canada Mortgage Housing Corp. says more than 11,000 condos were added to rental market in Metro Vancouver last year, spurred in part by taxes on empty homes.

The CMHC report was released as Vancouver council voted Wednesday to increase its empty homes tax from 1.25 per cent to three per cent for next year.

The study says of the 11,118 units, 2,294 were new condos and were rented out by investors, while 8,824 were being used by their owners for another purpose and are now being offered as long-term rentals.

It says the B.C. government’s speculation and vacancy tax, Vancouver’s empty homes tax and new city requirements affecting short-term rentals also contributed to the increase in the number of condos for rent.

However, the report says the added units didn’t outweigh strong demand and the vacancy rate in Metro Vancouver remains at or below one per cent, where it’s been for six consecutive years.

It says the COVID-19 pandemic will affect the market and condo owners who rent out their units for short-term vacations may want the more stable income from long-term rentals.

Mayor Kennedy Stewart proposed the increase in the tax on empty homes.

“This groundbreaking tool has helped move thousands of homes back onto the rental market … but there are still too many homes that remain empty,” Stewart said in a statement. “By tripling the tax from one to three per cent since the tax launched, we’re sending an even stronger message that homes are for people, not speculation.”

READ MORE: Tenants’ union calls on B.C. government to reinstate eviction ban

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

Metro VancouverReal estateRentals

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The Abbotsford Community Foundation has a total of $160,000 available to award in 2021 through its Agricultural Enhancement Grants Program. (Submitted photo)
Applications now being accepted by Abbotsford Community Foundation for agricultural grants

Total of $160K available for projects that support agricultural innovation

Construction has begun on the new Eagle Mountain elementary school in Abbotsford. (Screengrab from video by CHP Architects)
Construction begins on new Eagle Mountain elementary school in Abbotsford

School, including childcare spaces, is set to open in September 2022

Bill Hireen joined Remembrance Day celebrations in Abbotsford in 2019. The veteran and long-time civic supporter passed away on Dec. 31, 2020. (Abbotsford News file photo)
Long-time Abbotsford city council supporter dies of COVID-19

Bill Hireen was a frequent visitor to council and police board meetings

Uber Eats has announced that it is now delivering food orders in Abbotsford and Chilliwack. (Submitted photo by Justin Walker)
Uber Eats announces expansion into Abbotsford

Food-delivery company is staring with 60 local restaurants

Nakota Hinksman had been reported missing in Abbotsford, but has since been located.
UPDATE: Missing teen with autism has been located in Abbotsford

Nakota Hinksman, 18, had been missing since 3:20 a.m. on Tuesday

Dr. Penny Ballem, a former deputy health minister, discusses her role in leading B.C.’s COVID-19 vaccination program, at the B.C. legislature, Jan. 22, 2021. (B.C. government)
B.C. holds steady with 407 new COVID-19 cases Tuesday

14 deaths, no new outbreaks in the health care system

People walk along a pedestrianized zone of Sainte-Catherine street in Montreal, Monday, May 18, 2020, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues in Canada and around the world. Newly released statistics point to a major drop in police-recorded crime during the first eight months of the COVID-19 pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
Crime down in first 8 months of pandemic, but mental health calls rise: StatCan

The agency says violent crimes such as assault dropped significantly

Cowichan Tribes chief Squtxulenhuw (William Seymour) confirmed the first death in the First Nations community from COVID-19. (File photo)
Cowichan Tribes confirms 1st death amid growing COVID-19 outbreak

Shelter-in-place order has been extended to Feb. 5

(Pixabay)
B.C. teacher gets 1 day suspension after ‘aggressively’ throwing dumbbell at student

Documents show the weight would have hit the student if they didn’t catch it

This 2020 electron microscope image provided by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases - Rocky Mountain Laboratories shows SARS-CoV-2 virus particles which cause COVID-19, isolated from a patient in the U.S., emerging from the surface of cells cultured in a lab. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, NIAID-RML
B.C. ramping up screening for faster-spreading COVID-19 ‘variants of concern’

B.C. has sequenced about 11,000 COVID-positive samples since last February

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A Cessna 170 airplane similar to the one pictured above is reported to be missing off the waters between Victoria and Washington State. Twitter photo/USCG
Canadian, American rescue crews searching for missing aircraft in waters near Victoria

The search is centered around the waters northeast of Port Angeles

Most Read