What is the difference between a "Strata", a "Leasehold" and a "Co-Op?

Strata - the normal "freehold" ownership where the owner owns the unit plus a portion of the common areas with the rest of the owners. (Most Common in Vancouver)

Leasehold - the land is owned by a Corporation, Government, or Native Band which holds a "Master" lease on the land with an expiry period.  There is a usually another lease payment required with the monthly maintenance fees.  The buyer will only own improvements in the home.  Once the lease expires, ownership reverts back to the Corporation which owns the land.

Co-Op - the buyer owns shares in the building with exclusive rights to the suite. 

What is Property Transfer Tax and are there exemptions?

You pay Property Transfer Tax when you purchase or acquire an interest in a property. The tax must be paid when you register changes to a certificate of title with the Land Title Office. For example, a change may include adding or deleting a name from the title.

Property Transfer Tax is different from property tax. You pay property tax on an annual basis for services you receive from your local government, even if no money changes hands

Exemptions - 1st time home Buyers that meet the following requirements;

  • If the fair market value is $200,000 or less, the tax is 1% of the fair market value
  • If the fair market value is greater than $200,000, the tax is 1% of the fair market value up to $200,000, plus 2% on the portion of the fair market value that is greater than $200,000

•For registrations on, or after, February 20 2008, the fair market value threshold for eligible residential property is $475,000.

A proportional exemption is provided for eligible residences with a fair market value of up to $25,000 above the threshold (i.e. up to $500,000).

  • You must be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada.
  • You must be the purchasing a principal residence.
  • You must not have previously owned an interest in real estate anywhere in the world.
  • You must have resided in the province of B.C. for at least one year (12 consecutive months) immediately prior to the application to register the purchase of the principal residence.
  • The term of your mortgage must be at least one year.
  • The purchaser must occupy the property as their principal residence within 92 days of completion.
  • The purchaser must continue to occupy the property as their principal residence for at least 1 year from the date the transfer was registered.

What's the difference between Assessed Value and Market Value?