Vancouver City Council is expected to vote Tuesday morning on whether to bring in the proposed empty homes tax.
At a briefing last week, reporters were told that the tax will be one per cent of the property’s assessed value.
The tax is designed to apply to properties that aren’t a principal residence, or are not being rented out for at least 6 months of the year.
Altogether, the city estimates that number to be around 20,000 units; however, there are exemptions: snowbirds, academic staff on sabbatical, or if you need to care for a family member.
The program also requires homeowners to self-declare, with penalties of up to $10,000 per day if you don’t.
But the city says it’s not about revenue, it’s about getting the near zero rental vacancy rate off the floor, and more people actually living in the city.
The tax would go into effect for 2017, with the first payment due in February 2018.