Toronto Real Estate Board

Toronto Real Estate Board

December 10, 2012 07:00 ET

Supported by New Poll, REALTORS® Call for 2013 Budget to Begin Land Transfer Tax Phase Out

Public believes plan to eliminate LTT should proceed, notwithstanding current political circumstances.

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Dec. 10, 2012) - The Toronto Real Estate Board (TREB) is releasing the results of new public opinion polling that points to the impact that the Toronto Land Transfer Tax is having on Toronto's real estate market and strong public support for City Council to begin phasing out this tax, notwithstanding current political circumstances at City Hall. TREB will be presenting the results of the poll to the City of Toronto's Budget Committee today, as part of the City's 2013 Budget public hearings.

"The time to start phasing out the Toronto Land Transfer Tax is now. We have seen poll after poll show that the public wants this tax scrapped," said Ann Hannah, TREB President. "The public supports Mayor Ford's plan to eliminate the Land Transfer Tax, and they want that plan carried out, notwithstanding current political circumstances."

The polling was conducted by Ipsos Reid and found:

  • Nearly seven in ten Torontonians, 68 per cent, support plans to eliminate the Toronto Land Transfer Tax. This is up from 65 per cent one year ago.
  • Seven in ten Torontonians, 71 per cent, support City Council moving ahead with eliminating the Toronto Land Transfer Tax, regardless of who is Mayor.
  • 77 per cent of GTA residents planning to purchase a home in the next two years are more likely to purchase outside Toronto specifically to avoid paying the Toronto Land Transfer Tax.
  • 72 per cent oppose municipal land transfer taxes even if this tax was dedicated for spending on transit and infrastructure.
  • 76 per cent of Torontonians who recently paid the LTT feel that they have received little or no added value in municipal services for the amount of LTT that they paid.

"For the buyer of an average detached home in Toronto, the municipal land transfer tax costs about $10,000. It is unfair to expect people like down-sizing seniors, or young growing families who need more space, to pay so much more than their fair share," said Hannah.

Research has proven that municipal land transfer taxes have a negative impact on home sales. The C.D. Howe Institute recently released an analysis of the Toronto Land Transfer Tax, which shows that this tax has hurt Toronto's economy by dampening home sales by 16 per cent. In addition, the Ipsos Reid poll found that 25 per cent of the people who recently purchased a home in Toronto would have spent their land transfer tax money on furnishings or appliances, if they had not had to give it to the City, and 21 per cent would have spent it on renovations.

"Housing sales create jobs because when people move they spend money on things like renovations, movers, appliances, and furnishings. In fact, studies have shown that every resale housing transaction results in over $40,000 of spin-off spending. Every housing sale that is lost as a result of the Toronto land transfer tax risks Toronto jobs," said Hannah.

These are some of the findings of two Ipsos Reid polls conducted between November 24th to 29th and November 29th to December 6th, 2012 on behalf of the Toronto Real Estate Board. For these surveys, samples of 1,112 residents of the GTA region and 521 residents of the City of Toronto from Ipsos' Canadian online panel were interviewed online. Weighting was then employed to balance demographics to ensure that the sample's composition reflects that of the adult population according to Census data and to provide results approximate the sample universe. The precision of Ipsos online polls are measured using a credibility interval. In this case, the polls are accurate to within +/- 3.4 percentage points of all residents in the GTA region and +/- 4.9 percentage points for all residents of the City of Toronto. The credibility interval will be larger for sub-groupings of this population. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to coverage error, and measurement error.

Greater Toronto REALTORS® are passionate about their work. They are governed by a strict Code of Ethics and share a state-of-the-art Multiple Listing Service. Over 35,000 TREB Members serve consumers in the Greater Toronto Area. The Toronto Real Estate Board is Canada's largest real estate board.

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Contact Information

  • Media Inquiries:
    Toronto Real Estate Board
    Mary Gallagher
    Senior Manager Public Affairs
    (416) 443-8158