Mayor Robertson's Statement on Empty Homes Tax Exemptions

"Today, Council took another step to finalize Vancouver’s Empty Homes Tax. As Mayor, I reiterate that there will be no exemptions for luxury homeowners to cap the Empty Homes Tax, or for exemptions on homes for sale because people claim that tenants will lessen the value of their property. If you’re holding a property as an investment, it will be taxed as an investment.

In a housing crisis, it’s unacceptable for so much housing in Vancouver to be treated as a commodity; housing is for homes first, and as investments second.  We need a tax on the 25,000 empty and underutilized homes to encourage the best use of all our housing, and help boost our rental supply at a time when there’s almost no vacancy.

With Vancouver’s affordability crisis impacting all incomes and neighbourhoods, the City is boldly resetting our approach to creating housing. Next week, the City will put forward next steps on regulating short-term rentals, which are rapidly eroding our long-term rental supply and pushing rental prices up. In July, we’ll be putting forward the next major steps in our Housing Reset to deliver the right supply of housing that meets local needs and incomes: a housing mix that includes more rental housing, townhomes, row houses and duplexes in low and moderate density neighbourhoods. All options are on the table to keep Vancouver liveable, inclusive and affordable now and for many years to come.”