What is NRST?

The NRST is a 15 per cent tax which applies to purchases of certain types of properties located within the Greater Golden Horseshoe by certain prescribed entities.  This tax is in addition to the Land Transfer Tax which applies to all purchase transactions in Ontario and the Municipal Land Transfer Tax which applies to all purchase transaction in the City of Toronto. This tax applies to transactions entered into after April 20, 2017.  The NRST is payable with respect to transfers which are registered on title and which are not registered on title.

What Type of Properties are Subject to NRST?

NRST applies to purchases of land containing at least one and not more than six single family residences.  The NRST does not apply to purchases of multi-residential buildings containing more than six units, or commercial land, agricultural land or industrial land.

What is the Greater Golden Horseshoe?

Greater Golden Horseshoe areas includes: Toronto, Brant, Dufferin, Durham, Haldimand, Halton, Hamilton, Kawartha Lakes, Niagara, Northumberland, Peel, Peterborough, Simcoe, Waterloo, Wellington and York. 

Who is Subject to NRST?

The NRST applies to Foreign Nationals, Foreign Corporation and Taxable Trustees.  The NRST applies to the full value of the entire consideration being paid if any one of the purchasers is a Foreign National, Foreign Entity or a Taxable Trustee.

Foreign National” is a person who is not a Canadian Citizen or a Permanent Resident.

Foreign Corporation” is a corporation that is one of the following:

  • Not incorporated in Canada
  • Is incorporated in Canada but is controlled in whole or in part by or is associated (for the purposes of section 256 of the Income Tax Act (Canada) with a Foreign National or other Foreign Corporation, unless the shares of the corporation are listed on a Canadian stock exchange; or

Taxable Trustee” is a trustee that is one of the following:

  • A foreign entity (Foreign National or Foreign Corporation)holding title in trust for beneficiaries, or
  • A Canadian citizen, permanent resident of Canada, or a corporation holding title in trust for foreign entity (Foreign National or Foreign Corporation) beneficiaries.

Who is Exempt from NRST?

The following individuals who are not Canadian Citizens or Permanent Residents are exempt from paying NRST:

  • Foreign National who receives confirmation under the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (“Nominee”). To qualify for this exemption, the foreign national must be confirmed under the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program at the time of the purchase and the property must be used as the Foreign National’s principal residence.
  • Foreign National who is conferred the status of “convention refugee” or “person in need of protection” (“Refugee”) under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Actat the time of the purchase.
  • Foreign National who has a spouse, who is a Canadian Citizen, Permanent Resident of Canada, Nominee or Refugee if the Foreign National jointly purchases residential property with that spouse.   

Spouse” means spouse as defined in section 29 of the Family Law Act. This means either of two persons who are married to each other, or who are not married to each other and who have cohabited,

(a) continuously for a period of not less than three years, or

(b) in a relationship of some permanence, if they are the natural or adoptive parents of a child.

Who is Entitled to a Rebate of NRST?

A rebate of the NRST may be available in the following situations:

  • The Foreign National becomes a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada within four years of the date of the purchase;
  • The foreign national is a student who has been enrolled full‑time for at least two years from the date of purchase in an “approved institution”, as outlined in Ontario Regulation 70/17 of the Ministry of Training, Colleges, and Universities Act; or
  • The foreign national has legally worked full‑time in Ontario for a continuous period of one year since the date of purchase or acquisition.

In order to be eligible for the rebates, the Foreign National must exclusively hold the property, or hold the property exclusively with his or her spouse.  The property must also have been used as the Foreign National’s (and if applicable their spouse’s) principal residence for the duration of the period.


This material is provided for general information purposes only and is not intended to constitute legal advice.   If you have a specific legal question please contact Adam Altmid at adam@altmidroll.com