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Work Permit Holders: It is Now Possible Again to Buy Your Home in Canada

On June 23, 2022, the Government of Canada adopted the Act Prohibiting the Purchase of Residential Property by Non-Canadians, which aims to temporarily ban a large number of foreigners and foreign corporations from buying residential properties in Canada for a period of 2 years starting from January 1, 2023. However, on March 27, 2023, the Minister of Housing and Diversity and Inclusion, Ahmed Hussen, announced modifications to the current law, which came into effect on the same day of the announcement, i.e., March 27, 2023.

These modifications appear to aim at increasing the flexibility for newcomers and companies looking to expand the housing supply in Canada.

One of the changes allows holders of a valid work permit for at least 183 days at the time of the transaction to purchase a residential property, provided it is the only residential property they own on Canadian soil. Furthermore, conditions related to previous work experiences and income tax returns have been abolished.

It is also possible for individuals who are not Canadian citizens to buy one or more vacant lands zoned for residential or mixed use. Additionally, the tolerated threshold of control by a person not possessing Canadian citizenship in a private company or entities constituted under federal/provincial laws has been increased from 3% to 10%.

All these modifications facilitate the arrival of new immigrants to Canada as well as their ability to invest directly in Canadian companies.

It took nearly 3 months for the federal government to realize that the restrictions imposed by the law were likely too severe.


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