Should property taxes be higher for non-primary residences?
“The dark houses in West Vancouver are so prevalent on some streets that Mayor Michael Smith worries about how his community is functioning.
He would like to see a heavy tax on houses that are used as investments or secondary residences, just like the $20,000 a year he pays in taxes for his vacation house in Kauai, Hawaii.
“As a society, we need to decide whether homes are for people and families or whether they’re investments,” Mr. Smith said. “If it’s not your principal residence, you should pay more in tax. The best way to stop this is to make it punitive.”
In Coquitlam, residents are also noticing dark condos in the new high-rises around the city centre. But Mayor Richard Stewart said it is not seen as such a bad thing.
“We raise taxes to pay for city services and, if someone is paying taxes but not consuming services, most people don’t have a problem with that,” he said.
Is it good enough to collect a standard property tax from some one who doesn’t live in a community or should politicians jump to take extra money from people who can’t vote them out?
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