Properties deemed empty will be subject to a tax of 1% of the property’s 2019 assessed taxable value. Most homes will not be subject to the tax, as it does not apply to principal residences or homes rented for at least six months of the year; however, all homeowners are required to submit a declaration. Net revenues from the Empty Homes Tax will be reinvested into affordable housing initiatives.
Each year, every owner of residential property will have to make a property status declaration. This will determine if the property is subject to the Empty Homes Tax, also known as the Vacancy Tax.
Properties not subject to the tax
Most properties will not be subject to the Empty Homes Tax, including those:
- Used as a principal residence by the owner, his/her family member or friend, or other permitted occupier for at least six months of the 2019 tax year
- Rented for residential purposes for at least six months of the current year, in periods of 30 or more consecutive days
- Meeting the criteria for one of the exemptions
If you do not qualify for an exemption, several options are available to you in 2020:
- Become a landlord by renting your property for at least six months of the year, in periods of 30 or more consecutive days
- Enlist a property management firm to rent your property on a long-term or periodic basis
- Invite a family member or friend to occupy your property as his/her principal residence for at least six months of the current year
- Occupy your property as your principal residence for at least six months of the current year
- Keep your property as-is and pay the Empty Homes Tax
- Sell your property.