Faculty Staff Housing Programs: Taxable Benefits Information

Some of UBC’s housing programs for faculty & staff (employees) lead to what are called ‘taxable benefits’. Under these programs, an economic benefit is provided by an employer, UBC, to its faculty or staff. Canadian income tax law provides that any assistance provided or amount paid for or on behalf of an individual, in connection with their office or employment, for the acquisition or use of a residence is a taxable employment benefit.

UBC as an employer is required by law to calculate, report, withhold, and remit tax on cash and non-cash taxable benefits.

  • The employee is solely responsible to pay income tax on taxable employment benefits. The employee also pays any applicable Canada Pension Plan contributions or Employment Insurance Act premiums.
  • UBC withholds income tax from an employee’s payroll. UBC then remits the tax to Canada Revenue Agency (“CRA”) for each applicable pay period, just as with normal payroll withholding.
  • Most taxable benefits appear on the employee’s paystub for each pay period during the year.
  • At the end of the tax year, the total of all taxable benefits in respect of housing will appear on an employee’s T4 in the Other Information area under Code 30. The total taxable benefit for housing will also be included in total taxable income in Box 14 of the T4 of the attached document.

UBC has determined that taxable benefits arise on housing assistance programs, including:

  • Restricted Faculty Second Mortgage Loan
  • Faculty-Staff Restricted Rental (including Rent-Geared-to-Income pilot program)
  • Mortgage Interest Assistance
  • Down Payment Assistance
  • Prescribed Interest Rate Loan (unless interest payment equal to CRA prescribed interest rate, then no taxable benefit)

See more explanation and examples of taxable benefit calculations (PDF) for each type of UBC housing program. Further information on taxable benefits can be found on the UBC Finance website.

An employee may participate in one or more housing assistance programs. However, to participate in each program, an employee must meet the specific criteria of that program.

  • Not all programs are available to all employees or at all UBC campuses.
  • UBC is committed to assisting our community in obtaining affordable and high-quality housing.
  • Employees should note that even with the cost of tax payable on taxable benefits, the housing assistance programs offer good value to employees.

For questions related to this page, please contact Kate Malcolm at 604-822-0945 or kate.malcolm@ubc.ca.

You can also download a printable PDF version of this webpage.