North End Waterfront - City Councilors File Petition for 6% Real Estate Transfer Tax to Combat Housing Speculation
Wednesday, January 16, 2019
Councilors Lydia Edwards and Kim Janey have proposed a Home Rule Petition to combat housing speculation and establish an investor and commercial property transfer fee.
The proposed bill would enhance the city’s housing toolkit by generating millions of dollars for affordable housing and by discouraging the inflation of housing prices through rapid resale of properties. The proposal will be assigned to committee in Wednesday’s council session. The bill authorizes the City of Boston to establish a fee of up to 6%, split evenly between buyer and seller, on real estate transfers over $2 million, with an estimated revenue of $175m – $350m based on 2015-2017 sales. Exemptions are in place for owner-occupants, transfers between family members and homes purchased through approved home-buying classes. The bill also would authorize a fee of up to 25% on secondary sales, or flips, within a two year period.