Vancouver council is taking the next steps on a proposed new Empty Homes Tax to help relieve pressure on the rental housing market.
City staff will move forward with public consultation to provide homeowners with the chance to comment on the proposed tax.
Three councilors voted against the move.
Homeowners will receive a letter from the City with details on the tax and how to take part in the consultation process which will include open houses and an online survey.
The City says it’s seeking a tax rate that is high enough to encourage owners to rent out their empty homes.
Read More: Vancouver moves forward with empty homes tax
Net revenues generated from the tax will be re-invested into affordable housing initiatives.
The proposed empty homes tax will include secondary units being booked full-time on the vacation rental website Airbnb, with the maximum fine for people who evade the levy set at $10,000.
Mayor Gregor Robertson said $10,000 is the maximum fine the city can impose under its charter, but it will consider a combination of the fine plus a higher tax rate for people who fail to self-declare.