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The Underused Housing Tax Act Filing Deadline is Almost Here

The extended deadline for Underused Housing Tax Act (“UHTA”)[1] returns is almost here. On March 27, 2023, the Canada Revenue Agency (“CRA”) extended the deadline from April 30, 2023, to October 31, 2023, for underused housing tax (“UHT”) payments and returns relating to the 2022 calendar year.[2] CRA agreed to waive penalties and interest for this period.[3] 

UHTA Summary

The UHTA is a federal tax of 1% of a residential property’s value, applied annually to certain owners of underused or vacant residential property in Canada.[4] The tax took effect on January 1, 2022, and generally applies to non-resident, non-Canadian owners, although some Canadian owners can be subject to the UHT as well, so they should carefully review their obligations under the UHTA.[5] For a more detailed explanation of the UHTA, see our previous blog post here.

What’s next?

Real property ownerships and structures should carefully be reviewed, and affected owners need to review their filing and payment obligations to ensure they are in compliance with the new legislation. Any legal owner of residential property in Canada as of December 31 who is not an excluded owner must file an UHTA return. This means that registered owners such as nominees on title of the property may have filing obligations. Affected owners who meet an exception may not have to pay the tax, but still need to file a UHTA return. We note that CRA has created an interactive tool to assist taxpayers in determining whether they are an affected or excluded residential property owner.[6]

From November 1, 2023, onward, affected owners[7] of residential property in Canada as of December 31, 2022, will face penalties and interest if a return is not filed.[8] Penalties for failing to file the return by the October 31, 2023, deadline are a minimum of $5,000 for an individual owner and $10,000 for a person who is not an individual (such as a corporation).[9]

October 31, 2023, is also the deadline for any UHTA elections for the 2022 calendar year. These elections can include the multiple residential properties election,[10] election for fair market value,[11] and a joint election.[12] Elections are to be made on the Underused Housing Tax Return and Election Form, which is the prescribed form.

Excluded owners are not required to file a UHTA return and have no obligations or liabilities under the UHTA.

There is currently no indication that CRA will offer an extension to the filing deadline for the 2023 calendar year for which UHTA returns would are technically due by April 30, 2024.


[1] Underused Housing Tax Act, SC 2022, C.5 [UHTA].

[2] Canada Revenue Agency, Underused Housing Tax penalties and interest waived;

[3] Canada Revenue Agency, When to file the return and pay the tax;

[4] UHTA, s. 6.

[5] UHTA, s.6(3).

[6] The tool does not help you determine whether the property is a residential property or if you are an owner of the residential property. Canada Revenue Agency, Who must file a return and pay the tax;

[7] “affected owners” is the term used by CRA to classify any legal owner of residential property in Canada (generally speaking the person who is the registered owner on title of the property) as of December 31 of any calendar year who is not an excluded owner and who must file a return (see UHTA, s. 6(3)).

[8] UHTA, s. 47 and s. 23.

[9] Canada Revenue Agency, When to file the return and pay the tax;

[10] UHTA, s. 6(11).

[11] UHTA, s. 6(4).

[12] UHTA, s. 6(12).



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