The British Columbia government and Airbnb have reached a deal to collect taxes on short-term rentals, with the money collected used to fund housing affordability initiatives.
Finance Minister Carole James says the government will introduce legislation this year that allows Airbnb to collect 11 per cent in taxes and send the cash to the government.
Airbnb has agreed to collect the eight per cent provincial sales tax and a three per cent municipal and regional district tax on accommodations in the province that it processes.
James says they estimate the two taxes will amount to $21 million annually and that money will provide added revenue to address housing affordability.
She says the agreement with Airbnb is the first of its kind in Canada and it recognizes the reality that short-term rentals are part of B.C.’s accommodations options.
Airbnb spokeswoman Alex Dagg says the agreement allows the province to participate in the economic benefits of home sharing.
There are 18,500 Airbnb providers operating in B.C. The provincial government estimates taxes collected on their rentals will amount to $16 million through the provincial sales tax and $5 million through the municipal and regional district tax.
Airbnb already collects and remits taxes on behalf of the American states of Michigan, Nevada and California, and in France and India.
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