The day you become tax resident in Canada (see http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/tx/nnrsdnts/cmmn/rsdncy-eng.html) is the base date for the valuation of any foreign assets you hold. Assets such as foreign real estate, bank deposits, and securities are valued at their fair market value on that day and this is converted into Canadian dollars using the then current exchange rate. Historic exchange rates can be found on the Bank of Canada website http://www.bank-banque-canada.ca/en/rates/exchform.html. This has nothing to do with the actual cost to you. It is a reflection of the value as if you had disposed of, and repurchased, the assets immediately prior to landing. This is your "tax cost" of the asset in Canada. Keep documentary records to prove the asset’s valuations as these may be needed for reporting purposes, or if the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) asks to see them. If you hold foreign property with a combined tax cost of $100,000 or more at any time during a year this has to be reported on your tax returns for all the years you own it. Check the box on page one of your tax return and complete and file a form T1135.
- This includes houses, bank accounts, investments, savings and any other property.
- If an immigrant from the UK purchased a house in 1980 in Britain for £25,000 and still owned it when they left the UK in 2006 and it had a market value of £200,000 and the exchange rate was then 2.2, then $440,000 is the tax cost and the amount to report.
- Note that you do not need to report foreign assets for the year you become tax resident in Canada. However, you still must report any income earned on these assets from the date you become tax resident.