Valérie Plante will reimburse the welcome tax to families who buy property for the first time

Montreal - October 19th, 2017

In brief

The exodus of families is a phenomenon that has been afflicting Montreal for many years. Between 2010 and 2016, 30 000 children under the age of 15 left the island of Montreal with their parents. Valérie Plante wants to offer families a real incentive to stay in Montreal. The leader of Projet Montréal proposes to reimburse the property transfer tax, the "welcome tax", for all families with at least one child acquiring their first property as a family in Montreal.

Projet Montréal estimates that approximately 5100 families could benefit from the refund of the "welcome tax" each year. Several surveys have demonstrated that future home-buyers prefer the acquisition of a property in Montreal. In reimbursing the "welcome tax" for families, Valérie Plante hopes that it will be easier for them to achieve their dreams.

Highlights

• Projet Montréal commits to reimbursing the "welcome tax" for all families with at least one child who acquire a property in Montreal.
• The program that will be put in place will apply to a majority of families, without exceptions related to the price of the property.
• The reimbursement will be capped at $5000 and can only be claimed once. Once the program is in place, families will have four years to make their reimbursement claim.
• The difference between median property prices in Montreal and its suburbs can be as much as $100 000.
• The reimbursement program for the welcome tax will benefit approximately 5100 families each year.
• Since January 1, 2017, the Land Transfer Tax, the Ontario equivalent of the "welcome tax", is reimbursed for first-time home-buyers, to a maximum of $4000, by the provincial government.
• Several surveys commissioned by the City of Montreal and the SHDM have shown that future home-buyers prefer to live in Montreal. Nonetheless, thousands of families leave Montreal for the suburbs in search of more affordable housing.
• The scale used to calculate transfer taxes has not been revised since 1992, meanwhile the prices of residential properties have nearly tripled.
• The reimbursement of the "welcome tax" will constitute a useful tool for attracting and retaining families in Montreal.
• Projet Montréal will also revise the access to property program in order to reflect the reality of the housing market in Montreal and to benefit families.

Quotes

“Families in Montreal can barely afford a house in Montreal and the city is not seizing the moment to come to their assistance. To stop the exodus of families, we have to give them some respite. This is what we are proposing with the reimbursement of the "welcome tax" for families purchasing a home in Montreal. Nothing can replace the economic, social, and cultural dynamism that families contribute to city life. We have to give them the means to stay in the long-term in Montreal.”  - Valérie Plante, leader of Projet Montréal and candidate for Mayor of Montreal.

“The increasing cost of properties in Montreal represents a tall order for young families looking to acquire their first house. To compete with the suburbs, where property prices are often lower, it is important to offer serious incentives which will benefit as many families as possible. This is what we are proposing with the reimbursement of the "welcome tax", but also with the revision of the access to property program.”  - Michèle Chappaz, borough mayoral candidate in Verdun

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