VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – The province now says the return to the PST-GST will happen in the spring of next year but in the meantime, new home buyers are getting a break. The province will up the threshold for the new housing rebate.

It will increase to $850,000 on Apr. 1, 2012, meaning more than 90 per cent of newly built homes will be eligible for an HST credit of up to $42,500.

“A lot of people have expressed a lot of anxiety over this,” says Greater Vancouver Homebuilders Association CEO Peter Simpson. “They listened to our concerns, and on the concrete side they’ve introduced measures that will make it a lot easier for families in British Columbia to buy a home, at least when as far as the tax regime is concerned.”

“The word that was pervasive in the industry and amongst consumers was, ‘uncertainty,’” he explains. “I think we received a lot of clarity here today and some measures introduced that reduce the impact of the HST.

The rebate does not apply to resold homes – but people buying vacation homes in more rural parts of BC will be eligible for a sizeable grant of up to $42,500 on a purchase of up to $850,000.
Initially, the province said the HST would be gone by March 2013, the government now says Apr. 1 next year is the effective date.

The tax rate on a newly built home during the transition period will be two per cent.

The temporary housing transition measures will be in place for two years, until Mar. 31, 2015, and only applies to homes where construction begins before the transition date and ownership and possession occur after.