For several years the Real Estate Board has been petitioning the government to help first time buyers with the property transfer taxes that add to the cost of a home. It looks like they have listened. On February 21, 2012 the government implemented a temporary BC First-Time New Home Buyers' Bonus.
Effective immediately to March 31, 2013, the bonus is a one-time grant for eligible first-time new home buyers. It is equal to 5% of the purchase price of a new home, or if you are building your own home, 5% of the land and construction costs subject to HST. The maximum bonus is $10,000 and it will come in the form of a cheque from the Ministry of Finance.
How to qualify:
- It must be an eligible home in BC
- You can never have owned a primary residence
- You must have filed a 2011 BC resident personal income tax return or, if you moved to BC in 2012, you must file a 2012 tax return.
- You must enter into a written agreement after February 21, 2012
- You have to live in the home as your primary residence
All types of housing are eligible including float homes and homes in a cooperative housing corporation.
Individual home buyers are eligible for the full bonus based on a net income of up to $150,000. The bonus is reduce by 20 cents for every dollar earned above $150,000 and is zero if you earn more than $200,000. Four couples buying the bonus is reduced by 10 cents for every dollar in income over $150,000 and reduces to zero for couples earning over $250,000.
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