The Prohibition of the Purchase of Property by a Non-Canadians Act (the “Foreign Buyer Ban”) and Regulations are now in effect in Canada as of January 1, 2023.
What is the Foreign Buyer Ban?
It is intended to prevent non-Canadians from the direct and indirect purchase of residential property to reduce the impact of inflation in Canada.
How long is it in force?
2 years starting January 1, 2023.
What is a Non-Canadian?
Non-Canadian means to include the following:
What Property is Included?
The Ban applied to detached houses or similar buildings, containing not more than three dwelling units, or a part of a building that is a semi-detached house, rowhouse unit, residential condominium unit or other similar premises.
Note that there is also a geographical component to this Ban. Property located in an area of Canada that is not within either a census agglomeration (that is defined as an area that must have a core population of at least 10,000 people) or a census metropolitan area (that is defined as an area that must have a total population of at least 100,000 people of which 50,000 or more must live in the core).
The Foreign Buyer Ban applies to vacant land, that is zoned for residential use or mixed use, that is located within a census agglomeration or a census metropolitan area.
There are some exemptions to the Ban, allowing the following temporary residents to buy property in Canada:
Study Permit Holders if they meet the following criteria:
Work Permit Holders if they meet the following criteria:
Foreign Nationals who hold a passport that contains a valid diplomatic, consular, official or special representative acceptance issued by the Chief of Protocol for the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development;
Foreign Nationals with valid temporary resident status, whose temporary resident visa was issued, or temporary resident status was granted, following an exemption, if the Minister is of the opinion that the exemption was justified based on public policy considerations to provide safe haven to those fleeing conflict; and
Persons that have made a claim for refugee protection, if that claim has been found eligible and referred to the Refugee Protection Division.
What does the Foreign Buyer Ban not apply to?
While the Foreign Buyer Ban prohibits a non-Canadian to purchase, directly or indirectly, any residential property, there are certain exceptions that include:
The Foreign Buyer Ban also does not apply to a foreign state purchasing residential property for diplomatic or consular services.
One of the biggest aspects of the new Act is inclusion of penalties for any non-Canadian that contravenes the Act, and anyone that knowingly assists the non-Canadian in directly or indirectly purchasing residential property in Canada. They are guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to a fine of not more than $10,000. In addition, the court may order sale of the property, in which case the Purchaser will only be entitled to the purchase price of the property.
We are happy to meet with you to do an assessment of your ability to purchase property in Canada and create a Canadian immigration plan. Fill out this form and someone from our team will contact you:
If you are a non-Canadian looking to buy property in Canada, we can do an assessment of your situation to see if you are able to buy property in Canada in the next two years. We also offer a one-hour consultation to assess your ability to become a worker, student or permanent resident in Canada. Contact us today for a consultation!
You can also complete our free assessment here.
If you would like our assistance in navigating the Canadian immigration process or have questions regarding the new Foreign Buyer Ban and would like to speak to an immigration attorney, please contact our law firm to schedule an initial consultation with a lawyer in Kelowna or Penticton.