Declarations start for third year of Speculation and Vacancy Tax

RESIDENTIAL property owners who own homes in communities where the Speculation and Vacancy Tax (SVT) applies will soon receive their declaration packages in the mail, starting Tuesday, January 19, 2021.

Owners can complete their declaration as soon as they receive their package. The declaration takes less than 10 minutes to complete for most property owners. The quickest way to complete a declaration is online at:

More than 99.9% of British Columbians are exempt from paying the tax, but residential property owners in the taxable regions have to declare. All owners on the title, including spouses and relatives, must complete a declaration in order to claim an exemption or to determine eligibility for a tax credit. Corporations must also complete a declaration for all residential properties in taxable regions.

A majority of homeowners should receive their package by the end of February. The dates jurisdictions will start receiving SVT packages are:

* January 19: Surrey, interprovincial, international

* January 22: Delta

* January 25: Abbotsford, Chilliwack

* January 26: Aldergrove, Pitt Meadows and Mission

* January 27: Maple Ridge, Port Coquitlam, Port Moody, Coquitlam

* January 29: Langley, Richmond

* February 2: Anmore, New Westminster, West Vancouver, White Rock

* February 3: Burnaby

* February 4: North Vancouver

* February 5: Kelowna

* February 8: West Kelowna, Nanaimo, Lantzville, North Saanich

* February 9: Sooke, Victoria

* February 11: Brentwood Bay, Esquimalt, Saanichton, Sidney

* February 12: Vancouver

Owners can go to the SVT website to confirm when they can expect their declaration information to arrive. All required declarations must be completed by March 31, 2021. If owners are not exempt, they must pay their assessed amount by July 2, 2021. Starting this year, a penalty may be applied on all owners who do not pay tax amounts by the due date.

If people have questions or need help completing their declaration over the phone, they can call: 833 554-2323 (toll-free in Canada and the U.S.) or 604 660-2421 (international), Monday to Sunday, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. (Pacific time). Service is available in multiple languages.

If homeowners do not receive a declaration package and believe they should have, they are encouraged to contact the SVT call centre to request a package.

To learn more about the speculation and vacancy tax, visit: