When Snowbirds Don’t Come Home

[ 1 ] January 16, 2011 |

The Financial Post ran an article just before Christmas discussing seniors getting legal status to live in the USA. They stated that some seniors, after spending the winters in the warmer US regions, choose to stay permanently. Warmer climates weren’t the only reason; a lower cost of living was an important determination.

The article recommends hiring consultants before purchasing property and relocating because the US/Canadian tax treaty is complex and requires an accountant or financial advisor that understands implications from both countries.

I can vouch for this, when we first moved to Columbus, Ohio, we hired a Toronto accounting firm that “said” they understood cross border taxes. We had them file our return the first year and continued on for 6 more years, following their lead. After moving from Columbus, Ohio, to Detroit, Michigan, we received a 5 digit tax bill from the City of Columbus. We didn’t realize we should have paid municipal income taxes for the 7 years we lived there and neither had this “experienced” firm. Municipal taxes are different than property taxes; how they are paid can vary by situation. In our case, since the employer wasn’t “local” the taxes weren’t withheld from the paycheck.

Dealing with real estate and taxes across the border is a niche market. Finding someone with the expertise to guide your affairs thoroughly, offers peace of mind.

Read the entire article here.

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Category: Real Estate

About the Author ()

I'm a Canadian who has lived in the United States since 1999. I love the beauty of the Canadian landscape and dream about travelling to EVERY country in the world so I can say, without a doubt, that Canada is the MOST BEAUTIFUL country in the world. Until I can accomplish this feat of huge financial proportions, I'll continue to appease myself by writing about Canada's many, MANY virtues. Google+

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