HST deals across the country
Realtors are using various incentives to get people buying despite the new harmonized sales tax.
Justin Sullivan.Getty Images
It's not like a couple of years ago, when it was a sellers' market and the very idea of incentives was like a quaint notion from another era.
With the introduction of the HST in B.C. and Ontario on July 1, developers have had to get savvy when it comes to marketing their product. In Ontario, they started adjusting prices to absorb the new tax a year before it was introduced, which meant buyers hardly felt the pinch. Also in Ontario, developers have made it standard policy to include the new tax in their selling price. In B.C., the HST is just starting to become included in the cost of new homes, rather than passing it along to the buyer. It's just one of the ways that developers are sucking up the cost of doing business in a tougher market. In some cases, it means a new house is priced cheaper than a resale house.