Starting December 14th, the Province of Ontario announced that the tax rebate, of up to $2,000 for first time buyers would be extended to all properties and not just new construction. They obviously are following the lead of the new City Land Transfer Tax, whereby the first time buyer rebate applies to all properties and have seen the light.
In an era where we are trying to curb urban sprawl and encourage people to live downtown, it made no sense to have a tax policy which rewarded the opposite. The Toronto Real Estate Board has been pointing this out for years. The Ontario Government's only answer was that we were losing tax revenues, and that new as opposed to resale purchasers were more of a stimulus to the economy. Such is the intelligence of politicians.
But are these tax changes having any impact in the real estate market? While we have seen a few people move up their buying intentions to save the City tax, there has not been any stampede. It seems that Christmas and the Holiday Season are more of a priority. Let me know if these taxes have changed anything for you? My guess is that they will be rolled into the mortgage. In fact the Bank of Montreal has a promotion for its banking clients. make an offer before February 28, take out a B of M mortgage, and the Bank will pay the tax! For a bank to make that offer, they receive plenty of PR and they have probably figured out it won't cost them much. That's a bank for you!

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