Declare the 2023 occupancy status of your residential property. Owners of properties in Toronto that are classified within the residential property tax class are required to declare occupancy status every year. The deadline to declare is February 29, 2024.
If you wish to dispute your Notice of Assessment or have been asked to provide evidence, you can file a Notice of Complaint or submit evidence through the City’s secure online portal. View the status of your Declaration, Notice of Complaint, Appeal or Audit on the Property Tax Lookup page.

 

The goal of the Vacant Home Tax (VHT) is to increase the supply of housing by discouraging owners from leaving their residential properties unoccupied. Homeowners who choose to keep their properties vacant will be subject to this tax.

Revenues collected from the Vacant Home Tax will be allocated towards affordable housing initiatives, including the Multi-Unit Residential Acquisition (MURA) program.

You can get information about the Vacant Home Tax and how to declare occupancy status or file a complaint in any language. Click on “Translate” in the blue bar at the bottom of this webpage and select a language.

If you would like to report a residential property that you believe to be vacant, you can leave a message on the vacant property reporting hotline at 416-395-1098.

Owners of properties in Toronto that are classified within the residential property tax class are required to declare the occupancy status of their property every year, even if they reside there. However, the tax does not apply to:

  • properties that are the principal residence of the owner
  • properties that are the principal residence of a permitted occupant or occupied by a tenant (including business tenants)
  • properties that qualify for an exemption

As outlined in the bylaw, a property is considered vacant if:

  • the property was not the principal residence of the owner or any permitted occupants or was not occupied by tenants for a total of six months or more during the calendar year
  • the property was not eligible for an exemption
  • the property was deemed vacant because the owner failed to submit a declaration of occupancy status or any required supporting documentation

Declarations of occupancy status can be submitted through the online portal or by mail, either by the property owner or an authorized representative acting on their behalf.

Owners of properties subject to the tax will be issued a Vacant Home Tax Notice at the end of March and payment will be due in three instalments in May, June and July.

You do not have to declare if:

  • your property is not yet assessed
  • the property is classed as multi-residential, commercial or industrial
  • the property is classified by MPAC as vacant land, parking space or a condominium locker

Vacant Home Tax Calculation

For the 2022 and 2023 taxation years, a Vacant Home Tax of one per cent of the Current Value Assessment (CVA) will be levied on all Toronto residences that are declared, deemed or determined to be vacant for more than six months during the previous year. For example, if the CVA of your property is $1,000,000, the tax amount billed would be $10,000 (1% x $1,000,000).

For 2024 and future taxation years, a tax of three per cent of the CVA will be levied on all Toronto residences that are declared, deemed or determined to be vacant for more than six months during the previous year. For example, if the CVA of your property is $1,000,000, the tax amount billed would be $30,000 (3% x $1,000,000).

The tax is based on the property’s occupancy status and CVA for the previous year. For example, if the home is vacant in 2023 the tax will be calculated using the 2023 CVA and will become payable in 2024.

How to Declare

The City’s secure online portal is the best way to submit a declaration. It’s quick and easy to declare online – and helps prevent potential errors and readability issues that sometimes occur with declarations completed by hand. If required, homeowners can download a PDF of the form to complete and submit.

To make your annual declaration, you will need the 21-digit assessment roll number and the customer number from your property tax bill or property tax account statement.

Please do not submit any personal information by email as it is not a secure form of file transfer.

If there is an error in the declaration you submitted and it is not past the declaration deadline, you can re-file a new declaration.

Definitions of Occupancy Status

The following occupancy types may be selected when completing your declaration:

Occupancy Status  Description Subject to VHT?
Occupied as principal residence of homeowner The property is where you reside and conduct your daily affairs, receive mail, pay bills, etc. You can only have one principal residence. This applies even if you leave for extended periods of time due to travel (for example, snowbirds who spend more than six months away from their principal residence) or work. The property must be your principal residence for at least six months during the taxation year to claim this type of occupancy status.

Supporting documentation is not required unless requested by the City.

No
Occupied as principal residence of a permitted occupant A person(s) that is authorized by the registered owner to use a residential property as their principal residence. A permitted occupant is not a tenant or subtenant. A permitted occupant may include but is not limited to a family member or a friend of the registered owner. The property must be their principal residence for at least six months during the taxation year to claim this type of occupancy status.

Supporting documentation is not required unless requested by the City.

No
Occupied as a tenanted property (including business tenants) A residential property that is occupied by a tenant for residential purposes or business tenant that has a written tenancy agreement for a term of at least 30 days to occupy the property. The property must be occupied by one or more tenants for six months or more throughout the year.

Supporting documentation is not required unless requested by the City.

No
Vacant with an eligible exemption A residential owner may declare the property vacant with an eligible exemption.

Supporting documentation is required when declaring an exemption.

No
Vacant or deemed/determined vacant A residential property that was vacant for six months or more during the taxation year should be declared vacant by the homeowner in the declaration of occupancy status submission. A property will be deemed vacant if the owner fails to make a property status declaration and/or provide supporting documentation where applicable. A property that has been selected for audit, or on review of a Notice of Complaint or appeal can be determined to be vacant upon completion of the review. Yes

Snowbirds and other extended-stay travellers

The Vacant Home Tax allows for owners to be away from their principal residence due to travel, work and other reasons for extended periods of time.

The declaration form asks if the property was the principal residence of the owner for at least six months. The six-month stipulation refers to the property being your principal residence for this period of time and not your physical occupancy of the property. As long as a property remains your principal residence you can declare the occupancy status as occupied.

Co-ops and multi-unit residential dwellings

Properties in the residential property tax class that have a single roll number and multiple units must be declared annually. Only one declaration for the entire building is required. If at least one unit was occupied for six months or more, you can indicate that the property was occupied.

Submission Trouble Shooting Tips

If you are having difficulty using the online declaration portal, please try again after updating your web browser or by using a different browser.

A property may be left vacant and be exempt from the Vacant Home Tax if one of the following criteria is met:

Eligible Exemption Description Supporting Documentation 
Death of a registered owner The property was vacant for six months or more in the taxation year due to the death of an owner. This exemption may be claimed for up to three consecutive taxation years if the owner of the vacant unit died in the taxation year or in the two previous taxation years. Copy of death certificate.
Repairs or renovations The vacant property is undergoing repairs or renovations, and all the following conditions have been met:

  • Occupation and normal use of the vacant property is prevented by the repairs and renovations for at least six months of the taxation year.
  • All necessary permits have been issued for the repairs and renovations.
  • The City is of the opinion that repairs or renovations are being actively carried out without unnecessary delay.
Description of the project preventing occupancy, along with any supporting documents (for example, work orders, contractor receipts).

Copy of building permits issued related to the repairs and renovations.

Principal resident is in care The principal resident of the vacant property is in a hospital, long term or supportive care facility for at least six months during the taxation year. This exemption may be claimed for up to two consecutive taxation years. Signed letter from health care facility on letterhead.

Proof of principal residence at the subject property prior to entering care.

Transfer of legal ownership You purchased your property with a closing in the taxation year being declared, and the sale involved a 100 per cent transfer of an interest in the property to an unrelated individual or corporation. This excludes name changes, adding a second owner and removing a second owner. Copy of land transfer deed.
Occupancy for full-time employment The vacant property is required for occupation for employment purposes for a total of at least six months in the taxation year, by its owner who has a principal residence outside of the Greater Toronto Area. Proof of residency outside of Greater Toronto Area.

Signed letter from employer on company letterhead or employment contract.

Court order There is a court order in force which prohibits occupancy of the vacant property for at least six months of the taxation year. Copy of court order.
Vacant new inventory This exemption can be claimed by the developer of a newly constructed residential unit for up to two consecutive years if all the following conditions have been met:

  • The residential unit was not occupied as a residence at the end of the last business day of the taxation year for which the property is being declared, and was not occupied for residential purposes since it was constructed.
  • The residential unit was actively offered to the public for sale in the taxation year for which the property is being declared.
  • The owner of the residential unit is the developer of the residential unit.
Sales listing from the taxation year for which the property is being declared, and proof that the registered owner is the developer.

If a declaration is not submitted by the deadline, the property will be deemed vacant and will be subject to the Vacant Home Tax. Effective January 1, 2024, a fee of $21.24 will be charged for failing to submit a declaration of occupancy status by the declaration deadline.

Interest charges will apply to any overdue Vacant Home Tax amount at a rate of 1.25 per cent on the first day of default and on the first day of each month thereafter, for as long as taxes or charges remain unpaid.

Upon default of payment, the unpaid amount will be added to the property tax roll for the residential property and will be collected in the same manner as property taxes.

A Dishonoured Cheque Processing / Non-Sufficient Funds (NSF) fee will be applied to all payments that are not honoured by a financial institution.

Failure to submit a declaration of occupancy status by the deadline may result in a $250 fine. False declarations of occupancy status or failure to provide information when requested may result in a fine of up to $10,000, in addition to payment of the tax.

The Vacant Home Tax has implications for property transactions, both for purchasers and vendors:

  • It is the responsibility of purchasers and vendors to make appropriate arrangements to ensure that the declaration of occupancy status has been submitted.
  • Vendors should provide a copy of the completed and filed declaration of occupancy status to the purchaser.
  • Vendors should provide a statutory declaration at closing confirming the filed property status declaration is true and correct.
  • Purchases should do their due diligence to ensure they are aware of property tax liabilities.

Who is responsible for making the occupancy status declaration?

  • For property transferred prior to December 31 of the year being declared, the purchaser must submit a declaration. The purchaser qualifies for the “transfer of legal ownership” exemption.
  • For property transferred between January 1 and the closing of the declaration period on the last business day of February, the vendor must complete the declaration prior to the closing. This is because only the vendor will know the property’s occupancy status for the prior year.

What happens if the previous owner did not make a declaration?

  • The property will be deemed vacant and subject to the tax and fee.
  • The Vacant Home Tax forms a lien on the property, and the purchaser will be held responsible for the payment of the tax.

Vacant Home Tax payments are due in three equal instalment amounts on the due dates of May 15, June 17 and July 15, 2024.

To ensure your payment reaches the City on or before the due dates, we suggest making your payment electronically through MyToronto Pay or through your financial institution’s online banking portal.

Financial Institutions

You can pay the Vacant Home Tax at banks or financial institutions through online banking, telephone banking, at an automated teller machine (ATM) or in-person.

To register and pay through online banking:

  • You will need your 21-digit assessment roll number from your Vacant Home Tax Notice.
  • Sign in to your financial institution’s secure website and select the relevant payee listing, as follows:
Name of Financial Institution Payee Listing for Vacant Home Tax
BMO (Bank of Montreal) Toronto, City of, Taxes
CIBC (Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce) Toronto Tax
National Bank City of Toronto Taxes
RBC (Royal Bank of Canada) City of Toronto Property Taxes
Scotiabank Toronto (City) Property Tax
TD Canada Trust Toronto Tax

If your bank is not listed, please contact your financial institution for information.

Payee information is subject to change without notice. If you require assistance, please contact your bank or financial institution.

MyToronto Pay

MyToronto Pay is a new service from the City of Toronto in collaboration with our trusted partner PayIt. Using MyToronto Pay, Vacant Home Tax payments can be made by electronic funds transfer with no convenience fee, or by credit card or debit card with a convenience fee charged by the company.

Mail-In Payment

The City accepts post-dated cheques payable to the Treasurer, City of Toronto:

Treasurer, City of Toronto
PO Box 5000, Willowdale STN A
Toronto, ON M2N 5V1

Inquiry & Payment Counters and Drop Box Services

The City’s Property Tax and Utilities Inquiry & Payment Counters have reopened.

You can make payment by cash, cheque, money order or debit card. If making payment via drop box, cheque or money order is accepted.

Submit Complaint/Appeal or Respond to Audit

A two-stage process is available to property owners who wish to have the outcome of their declaration reviewed. The first step is to file a Notice of Complaint. The second process, an appeal request, is available to property owners who disagree with the decision about their Notice of Complaint.

To file a Notice of Complaint or Appeal you will need your 21-digit assessment roll number and the customer number from your property tax bill or property tax account statement.

A Notice of Complaint or Appeal should be made through the City’s secure online portal. If unable to submit online, you can submit your complaint and/or appeal by mail.

Please do not submit any personal information by email as it is not a secure form of file transfer.

You may be required to submit additional information or documentation. If you receive a letter requesting additional evidence, you will have 60 days to submit documents that support your occupancy or exemption claim. Failure to provide this information will result in the complaint or appeal not being considered. Once all required information is received and a determination is made, the City will send a written response by regular mail to the address on file.

Notice of Complaint

You may file a Notice of Complaint if:

  • you failed to make a declaration of occupancy status by the deadline
  • you made an error on your declaration and it is past the declaration deadline
  • you disagree with the Vacant Home Tax Notice of Assessment or Supplementary Assessment
  • your property was deemed vacant through an audit or otherwise and you wish to dispute the Vacant Home Tax that was levied in the Supplementary Vacant Home Tax Notice of Assessment

Submitting a Notice of Complaint through the online portal is quick and easy. Based on the options you select, you may or may not need to provide supporting documentation. If you are submitting your complaint in writing it must include:

  • assessment roll number and customer number
  • complainant’s full name and contact details (telephone number or email)
  • information that specifies your authority to act on the behalf of the owner, if this applies and you are a complainant acting on someone’s behalf
  • reason(s) for the complaint and why the residential property should not be subject to the tax
  • supporting documentation and evidence to substantiate the reason(s) for the complaint

Your complaint must be received within the following time frames:

  • For Vacant Home Tax Notice of Assessment: Any complaint must be received by the City on or before the last business day of the year that payment is due. For the 2022 taxation year, the complaint must be received by April 15, 2024. For the 2023 taxation year, the complaint must be received by December 31, 2024.
  • For Supplementary Vacant Home Tax Notice of Assessment: Within 90 days of the date on your notice.

Once all required information is received and a determination is made, the City will send a written decision letter to the owner by regular mail, at the mailing address on file at the time the decision is made.

Continue to pay the Vacant Home Tax as billed. If you do not pay the balance of the Vacant Home Tax prior to the due dates and your Notice of Complaint is not accepted, the tax will be due along with any applicable interest, penalties and fees.

If the property is determined not to be subject to the Vacant Home Tax:

  • The Vacant Home Tax will be cancelled, along with any applicable interest and penalties.
  • Any credits will be refunded or transferred to property tax.

Note that failure to pay the Vacant Home Tax by the due dates will result in interest and possible fees being added to the property tax account. Notice of Complaint decisions may not be finalized by the due date.

Appeal

If you disagree with the decision made regarding your Notice of Complaint, you will have 90 days to submit an appeal request. The grounds of your appeal are limited to the same issues raised in your initial complaint, unless the outcome of your complaint resulted in a reassessment or varied assessment.

Submitting an appeal through the online portal is quick and easy. If you are submitting your appeal in writing it must include:

  • assessment roll number and customer number
  • requestor’s full name and contact details (telephone number and/or e-mail address)
  • if acting on behalf of owner, information regarding your relationship to the owner and your authority to act on their behalf
  • statement of the grounds for the appeal and why the property should not be subject to the tax on these grounds
  • supplementary information and evidence to substantiate the grounds for the appeal

Upon receipt of your appeal request, your submission will be reviewed within 90 days by the Appellate Authority. The Appellate Authority will make a determination to allow or dismiss the appeal in whole or in part.

Following the determination the City will, if required, make any adjustments to the assessment within 30 days. The City will send a written decision letter to the owner by regular mail, at the mailing address on file at the time the decision is made. The appeal decision is final.

Supporting Documentation

Examples of supporting documentation include but are not limited to:

  • Ontario vehicle registration and vehicle insurance documentation showing subject address
  • government-issued personal identification showing subject address, including driver’s license and Ontario Identity Card
  • income tax returns and income tax notices of assessment showing subject address
  • tenancy agreement(s) for the residential property
  • bank statements showing reoccurring rental income
  • copy of death certificate of the registered owner
  • employment contracts, pay statements or records of employment showing subject address
  • insurance certificates for homeowner’s or tenant’s insurance at subject address
  • court orders prohibiting occupancy of the subject property
  • signed letter from health care facility on letterhead with contact details for the care facility
  • description of the type of project at the subject address along with any supporting documents (for example, work orders, contractor receipts) that demonstrate the occupation and normal use of the vacant unit was prevented by the repairs or renovations for at least six months in the taxation year
  • copy of any building permits issued to the subject address related to repairs or renovations land transfer deed for the subject address

Submission Trouble Shooting Tips

If you are having difficulty using the online portal, please try again after updating your web browser or by using a different web browser.

Mailing address:

City of Toronto, Revenue Services
Vacant Home Tax Complaints/Appeals
5100 Yonge St.
Toronto, ON M2N 5V7

Submit Complaint/Appeal or Respond to Audit

A property may be selected for audit on a random or specific criteria basis. If selected for audit, the City may require the owner to provide information and evidence to substantiate their claim of occupancy of a residential property or any exemption.

If further information or evidence is required, the City will send you a letter by mail advising what you need to do. Once an audit is complete, you will be notified by mail of the outcome.

Supporting Documentation

If your property is selected for audit you may be required to submit supporting documentation. Examples of supporting documentation include but are not limited to:

  • Ontario vehicle registration and vehicle insurance documentation of any occupant and owner
  • government-issued personal identification, including driver’s license and Ontario Identity Card of any occupant and owner
  • income tax returns and income tax notices of assessment of any occupant and owner.
  • lease agreements for the residential property
  • wills, grants of probate, or grants of administration in respect of an owner or an owner’s estate
  • employment contracts, pay statements or records of employment of any occupant and owner
  • insurance certificates for homeowner’s or tenant’s insurance
  • statutory declarations or affidavits regarding the occupancy of the residential property and any exemption

All records and documents pertaining to the occupation of the residential property or any exemption claimed must be retained for a period of three years.

Property owners who would like help to submit their declaration of occupancy status can visit a drop-in session at Toronto City Hall or one of the civic centres on select dates in February.

  • Toronto City Hall – February 5, 7, 28 & 29
  • Scarborough Civic Centre – February 5, 7, 28 & 29
  • Etobicoke Civic Centre – February 6, 8, 28 & 29
  • North York Civic Centre – February 6, 8, 28 & 29
  • York Civic Centre – February 5, 7, 26 & 27
  • East York Civic Centre – February 6, 8, 26 & 27

All sessions take place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. near the Inquiry & Payment counters.

In 2019, City Council asked for information related to the possible implementation of a vacant home tax in Toronto. At their December 2020 meeting, City Council asked City staff to develop key tax design features and administrative structures to support a vacant home tax program and to report back with a recommended design for a vacant home tax by the end of the second quarter of 2021, for tax implementation in 2022.

At its meeting on July 14-15, 2021, City Council adopted EX25.3- Recommended Tax Design and Steps to Implement a Vacant Home Tax in Toronto, approving the development and implementation of a vacant home tax in Toronto. At its meeting on December 15, 16 and 17, 2021, City Council adopted EX28.2 – Final Tax Design and Steps to Implement a Vacant Home Tax in Toronto, amending the City of Toronto Municipal Code, adding Chapter 778, Taxation, Vacant Home Tax.

At its meeting on October 11-12, 2023, City Council adopted EX8.7 – Vacant Home Tax: Status Update amending City of Toronto Municipal Code Chapter 778, Taxation, Vacant Home Tax and Chapter 441, Fees and Charges.

Vacant Home Tax Updates

Subscribe to receive updates about the Vacant Home Tax, including reminders to submit an annual declaration of your residential property’s occupancy status and notices of important due dates.

Type (don’t copy and paste) your email into the box below and then click “Subscribe”. You will receive an email with instructions to confirm your request.



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Revenue Services collects your personal email address under the legal authority of the City of Toronto Act, 2006, Section 8 and Part XII.1, and the City of Toronto Municipal Code, Chapter 778, Taxation, Vacant Home Tax. The information will be used to inform subscribers through email about the Vacant Home Tax including reminders for important submissions dates and due dates. Questions about this collection can be directed to Manager, Customer Service, Revenue Services, 5100 Yonge Street, Toronto, Ontario, M2N 5V7 or by telephone at 416-395-1048.