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Tax Programs

Property Tax Reduction:

  • New Brunswick Property Tax Abatement Program– This program provides a four-year tax reduction for designated heritage properties that undergo a significant restoration (at least $100,000 or 20% of the value of the property). The assumption is that the property will have a higher tax assessment after restoration. The program phases in that tax increase over a four year period. The owner pays no increase in property tax in the first year, only 25 percent of the increase in the second year, and 50 percent of the increase in the third and fourth years. Starting in the fifth year, the owner pays full property taxes based on the new assessment.
  • Ontario Heritage Tax Relief Program–Created in 2006, 30 municipalities have adopted this tax relief program. Under the program, municipalities give the owners of municipally designated heritage properties a percentage reduction in municipal and school property taxes. Properties must be subject to a heritage easement or an equivalent conservation agreement, under which the owner agrees to carry out regular conservation work on the property to nationally accepted standards. A local Heritage Property Tax Relief Program Committee approves the applications for tax relief and conducts regular inspections of the property to monitor compliance with the easement agreement. Municipalities can choose the amount of reduction (10 to 40 percent), establish different categories, set a cap on the total amount of reduction, determine the interval for reapplying, and issue the relief as a rebate cheque or a tax credit. If an owner breaches the terms of the agreement, the tax exemptions must be repaid.

Sales tax grants and rebates:

  • Heritage Tax Grant – The province of Nova Scotia provides a grant for the amount of the provincial portion (PST) of the Harmonized Sales Tax (8%) spent on eligible materials and labour costs, to a maximum rebate of $500 for work undertaken in any one year. The Heritage Tax Grant is available to owners of non-income-generating heritage properties that are municipally registered, provincially registered, or located within Conservation Districts. The grant is administered by the Nova Scotia Department of Tourism, Culture and Heritage.
  • Provincial Sales Tax Rebate– The province of Nova Scotia also provides a tax rebate for the provincial portion (PST) of the Harmonized Sales Tax (8%) spent on building materials used in the conservation and repair of the building exterior. There is no maximum amount for the rebate. However, only projects approved by the municipal heritage division or heritage advisory committee prior to the start of work are eligible for the rebate. The tax rebate is administered by Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations under the Sales Tax Act.