Saturday, August 7, 2010

HST confusion to blame for home sales drop?

Residents of Ontario and B.C. are unsure about how the harmonized sales tax (HST) affects real estate transactions, a new study finds, and the confusion is being blamed for a slide in home sales.

Home sales in Toronto fell 34 per cent in July, according to the Toronto Real Estate Board.

TREB reported that there were 6,564 sales last month, down from 9,967 in the same month in 2009. Home sales were at the lowest level since 2002.

"The level of July sales remained below the expected long-term trend. The market has become more balanced following record monthly sales through most of the winter and early spring," said board president Bill Johnston, in a release.

Confusion around how HST applies to homes sales could be to blame. A new survey of realtors released Thursday by Royal LePage finds that 43.9 per cent feel the tax is playing a part in cooling the housing market.

Source: CNC News
Last Updated: Thursday, August 5, 2010 | 2:37 PM ET

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1 comment:

  1. The number one thing that can be done to ensure that people can afford a home is to ensure that people have a job. The HST is estimated to increase investment by $47 million and almost $600,000 jobs.

    The HST will not apply to homes under $400,000 and will not apply to resale homes regardless of the price.

    The HST is part of this comprehensive tax package that will see 93 per cent of Ontarians receive personal income tax cut. With these cuts Ontario now has the lowest provincial tax rate in Canada on the first $37,106 of taxable income. In fact, 90,000 low-income Ontarians will no longer have to pay Personal Income Tax.

    To help families we have introduced a permanent $260 Sales Tax Credit for low- and middle-income adults, children and seniors. In total $4.2 billion in transition payments will be delivered to help Ontarians adjust to the Harmonized Sales Tax. It is important to remember that every $100 in tax relief is equivalent to the 8% tax on $1250 in newly taxed items.