Chinese oligarch sues city of Vancouver over $200,000 "Empty Homes Tax"

Vancouver homes were already at the unaffordable stage back in 2005, before the ogligarchs moved in. It is the inevitable result when shelter is treated as a commodity rather than a right.

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I’m in the Chicago area, and the building in question has a local owner. The problem of real estate going to waste because of financial shenanigans is happening everywhere, unfortunately.

Tearing down a house in Vancouver ain’t cheap. The costs here say it will be more than $50,000 for an average house. But anecdotally for larger houses, I’ve heard the cost can be over 100k. Though, this is still only a few years worth of the tax, so it may be worth it for some people.


No, the article says it’s typically between 15,000 to 40,000. (And it’s the higher end if it’s a house with asbestos, or a house built before 1940, and some of the fees overlap.)

I’m sure some people spend more, because they’re in a hurry or not particularly thrifty…but 50k’s not the average cost.

It’s a problem in cities where zoning and permits are loose, and especially so in cities where the regulations are mainly created by whichever politicians have ties to the real estate industry.

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That 15-40K number you’re citing is for the demolition itself. It doesn’t include the permit (another 15K) or asbestos removal. My experience is that most homes built before 1980 will have some amount of asbestos in them, so that’s another 15K or so. And the majority of homes being demolished are older ones that will likely full of the stuff.

The 15k deposit is for pre-1940 homes only. (It’s also not an additional cost even for pre-1940 homes; it’s refunded when compliance is confirmed). Not additional.

Your article says the cost I mentioned includes both Abatement and Demolition. Abatement includes asbestos removal. The article says that cost overlaps with most cases of asbestos removal. Part of the cost, not additional.

Again, lots of people could spend 100K but the average cost isn’t 50K, and the article doesn’t say the average cost is 50K.

Maybe you disagree with the article, and maybe you’re right. But it says what it says.

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