Halton is considering a potential vacant homes tax that could encourage owners of unoccupied homes to rent or sell, helping to improve the number available for residents.
A vacant homes tax is an additional tax on unoccupied homes. It could encourage owners to sell or rent them out, helping to increase the number of homes available in Halton. This type of tax is commonly implemented in communities with high housing prices and a low supply of homes for sale or rent.
Housing supply and affordability can be a challenge for those who want to live in our growing community. One way we are addressing this issue is studying how a vacant homes tax could help improve housing supply and contribute to Halton's Comprehensive Housing Strategy.
The potential vacant homes tax would only apply to unoccupied homes. It will only affect those who own a home in Halton that is vacant.
Council Direction: Council provided direction to staff to report back on a tax on vacant homes.
Update Provided: Work underway (PDF file) to undertake a feasibility assessment for a potential vacant homes tax.
Feasibility Assessment: Feasibility Assessment for vacant homes tax (PDF file) conducted by Ernst & Young LLP and reported to Council through FN-15-22 (PDF file).
Public Consultation: Engaged with the public to gather input through an online survey and 2 online zoom webinars. The consultation concluded on November 30, 2022, and staff are reviewing community feedback.
Design and Implementation Study: Develop the proposed framework for the vacant homes tax, incorporating feedback received through public engagement.
Seek Council Approval: Present the proposed vacant homes tax program framework to Regional Council for approval.
The public engagement conducted in 2022 featured two virtual meetings open to all interested residents, businesses and stakeholders. To view recordings of these sessions, please play the videos below.