If you have been following my fairly critical columns (all nine of them) on the issue of sales tax harmonization, please do not adjust your set as I change my tune. However, as a result of some major enhancements to the tax structure by the provincial government, that’s exactly what I’m doing.

Prior to the provincial budget, our industry’s main message was that housing is different and should be treated differently under harmonization.

On budget day, March 26, the province protected homebuyers of product under $400,000 by instituting a 75 per cent tax rebate (versus the federal goods and services tax new housing rebate of 36 per cent), which, combined with input tax credits, ensured that homebuyers would pay no more or less tax than previously.

As pleased as we were with the generous rebate and higher thresholds ($400,000 to $500,000 versus $350,000 to $450,000 under the GST), we couldn’t help but express our concern that the impact of the HST on new homes over $400,000 would have a very deleterious impact on housing affordability and residential construction employment.

Read the full story by Stephen Dupuis “Tax structure changes lessen burden on buyers” in the Toronto Star (June 27, 2009)

Developments featured in this article

More Like This

Facebook Chatter