Registering For GST

Written by Ed Koehler on Nov. 26, 2019

Do you need to register for GST?

Some supplies are exempt from the GST/HST – that is, no GST/HST applies to them. This means that you do not charge the GST/HST on these supplies of property and services, and you are not entitled to claim input tax credits on property and services acquired to provide these supplies. You cannot register for the GST/HST if your business provides only exempt supplies.

The following are examples of exempt supplies:

  • a sale of housing that was last used by an individual as a place of residence;
  • long-term rentals of residential accommodation (of one month or more) and residential condominium fees;
  • most health, medical, and dental services performed by licensed physicians or dentists for medical reasons;
  • child care services, where the primary purpose is to provide care and supervision to children 14 years of age or under for periods of less than 24 hours per day;
  • most domestic ferry services;
  • legal aid services;
  • many educational services such as:
    • courses supplied by a vocational school leading to a certificate or a diploma that certifies the ability of individuals to practice or perform a trade or a vocation; or
    • tutoring services made to an individual in a course that follows a curriculum designated by a school authority;
    • music lessons;
  • most services provided by financial institutions such as lending money or operating deposit accounts;
  • the issuance of insurance policies by an insurer and arranging for the issuance of insurance policies by insurance agents;
  • most property and services provided by charities and public institutions; and
  • certain property and services provided by governments, non-profit organizations, municipalities, and other public service bodies including municipal transit services and standard residential services such as water distribution.

You do not have to register if:

  • You are a small supplier with revenues under $30,000 annually, as long you do not carry on a taxi business or commercial ride-sharing services;
  • Your only commercial activity is the sale of real property, other than in the course of a business. Although you do not have to register for the GST/HST in this case, your sale of real property may still be taxable and you may have to charge and collect the tax. For more information, see Real property; or
  • You are a non-resident who does not carry on business in Canada. For more information, see Guide RC4027, Doing Business in Canada – GST/HST Information for Non-Residents.

If you would like more information or have any questions, feel free to contact us at 780.466.6204, or click here to send us an email.

Ed Koehler

Ed Koehler


Ed joined KWB as an Accountant in September, 2019. He received his Diploma in Business Administration: Accounting from the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology in 2002. He has been in public practice accounting since 2003 and has specialized in corporate tax since then. Ed lived in Calgary for over 20 years and now enjoys living in Edmonton and is an active member of his community.

Ed is married and enjoys a wide variety of activities. He volunteers for several organizations including Edmonton Vocal Minority, a local LGBTQ+ choir in which he is a member. He also enjoys board gaming, watching sports, listening to music and collecting salt and pepper shakers.

Ed's Contact Information