Frequently Asked Questions

Browse through our frequently asked questions on taxes and services levy to find your anwser. Use keywords, and not full sentences, to improve your search results. If you can't find the answer to your questions please send us an email.

Q: Can I apply BC Government’s homeowner grant to the Services Levy?

No, You cannot apply BC Government’s homeowner grant to the Services Levy. The full amount of the grant is issued by the province and is not a municipal grant.

The full amount of the grant can be applied to the Rural Tax portion of your property taxes. Visit the BC Government’s Homeowner Grant website for more details.

Q: Do I require a license for a home business?

Yes. Business licenses are required for all commercial enterprises and home-based businesses in the UBC neighbourhood. Visit Campus + Community Planning for more details on how to apply for a business license.

Q: How do I update my ownership or billing address?

If ownership of the property has changed or you would like to update the billing address on file, please inform BC Assessment by accessing their online address change form or contact them at:

200-2925 Virtual Way,
Vancouver, BC V5M 4X5
Tel: 1-866-825-8322
vss@bcassessment.ca

Q: How is GST Collected?

Registered vendors must collect the GST/HST from purchasers of goods and services. In addition, importers of goods must pay the GST to the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) at the time the goods are cleared for customs purposes (and HST in the case of imports by consumers). They must also self-assess the provincial component of the HST, if applicable, when importing commercial goods. It is not possible for CRA to collect tax on imported services and imported intangible property at the border. Instead, imported services and intangibles are subject to GST/HST on a self-assessment basis under the imported taxable supply rules.

Q: How long does it take for a payment to appear on my account?

Customer accounts are usually updated each night for online payments only. If a payment hasn't appeared within one business day, please call 604-822-3596 or email levy@finance.ubc.ca. It will take approximately a week for cheques to be deposited. The services levy is invoiced annually in June, due middle of July. It covers the current calendar year (January - December).

Q: What are the overdue charges?

Services levy amounts outstanding as of the due date will be charged interest at the Royal Bank Prime Rate +6% per annum.

Q: What do the transaction status values mean?

The values for the transaction status as follows:

  • Approved: Transaction has been approved and captured by the bank. An amount has been debited from the customer account.
  • Declined: Transaction has been declined by the bank and no debit from the customer account will take place.
  • Submitted: Transaction has been sent to the customer bank.
Q: What if you receive an invoice with incorrect ownership of billing address?

If you receive an invoice with an incorrect ownership of billing address please contact the BC Assessment office and let them update their records first before informing UBC. UBC downloads the information from the BC Assessment office each year in April and updates our previous records.

If you sold your property after April, please provide us and the BC Assessment office with information regarding the change. It may take a while for the Land Title information to be updated.

Q: What is GST?

GST is a 5% tax on consumption of goods and services in Canada. It is levied under Part IX of the Excise Tax Act (ETA). Taxable goods and services supplied in a “participating province” (Ontario, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Prince Edward Island) are subject to the Harmonized Sales Tax (HST) at rates that vary depending on the particular province.

See Place of Supply for details.

Q: What is the levy used for?

The services levy funds collected by UBC are deposited in the Neighbours’ Fund, which funds the University Neighbourhoods Association Operating Budget. Money in the Neighbours’ Fund is used to provide the following municipal-like services to people living at UBC:

  • Community programming such as community centre and recreational services.
  • The Community Services Card, which gives residents access to the UBC and Vancouver Public Libraries, UBC Rec, UBC Botanical Gardens as well as other Campus discounts.
  • Landscaping.
  • Street lighting.
  • Road, gutter and sidewalk maintenance.
  • Sustainability initiatives such as composting and recycling.
  • Water, sewage and draining systems for UBC common areas (Note: water and sewer usage is billed directly by UBC Utilities).
  • Budget reserve funds (e.g., infrastructure replacement).
  • Operations, administration and financial management.
  • Property Management (through UBC Properties Trust).

Visit the University Neighbourhoods Association for more details.