The unveiling of Toronto’s 2023 budget on Tuesday morning revealed stark news for homeowners in the city – a possible 5.5% property tax increase.
In addition to the 5.5 per cent property tax hike – the highest increase since amalgamation in 1998 – homeowners can expect to pay an extra 1.5 per cent towards The City Building Fund. In total, homeowners can expect a 7 per cent increase to their costs.
The owner of an average-priced home valued at $695,268 will pay an additional $233 towards property taxes. Increases to the City Building Fund will cost homeowners an additional $50 per year.
It’s a hard ask for Toronto residents, who have already been feeling the pressures of rising interest rates and inflation over the last year.
“I have been Chair of the Budget Committee for eight previous budgets and this budget, without a doubt, has been the most challenging to date – from the pressures of inflation to the significant financial repercussions of the pandemic that we continue to face today.” Gary Crawford, Chair of the Budget Committee said.
As part of his re-election campaign, mayor John Tory promised to keep property taxes below the rate of inflation. He maintains that the 5.5 per cent property tax increase remains below the 6.6 per cent rate of inflation, and the City Building Fund should be considered a separate cost.
Where will all this extra tax money be going? According to Tory, the extra revenue generated by property tax hikes will go towards frontline services such as police and firefighters.
“The 2023 tabled budget follows through on my commitment to protect the frontline services that Toronto residents and businesses rely on, while investing in housing, transit and community safety,” he said in a press release.