FIRST TIME BUYER PROGRAMS
There are 3 Government programs available to first time home buyers however, you do not necessarily need to be a first time home buyer to utilize them. In the case of separation or divorce (married or common law), or a person with disability, or if the applicant (or their spouse/common law) have not been on any land title in the last 4 years may qualify you under one or more of these programs. Please contact Nikole directly to assist with which programs may apply.
1. First Time Home Buyers Plan
Overview of Program
The Home Buyers' Plan (HBP) is a program that allows you to withdraw up to $35,000 TAX FREE from your registered retirement savings plans (RRSPs) to buy or build a qualifying home for yourself or for a related person with a disability.
(NOTE: The September 2019 budget increased the limit from $25,000 to $35,000 and also now includes people who have recently gone through separation/divorce.)
Do I need to pay it back?
Yes, the minimum requirement to repay is 1/15 each year of the total amount withdrawn. You will indicate in your tax return how much of your total RSP contributions is to repay the HBP.
EXAMPLE: Withdraw $35,000 / 15years = $2,333/year would have to put back into an RSP.
How do I make the HBP withdrawal from my RSP?
By advising your RSP holder of the amount withdrawing and also completing the HBP form for Revenue Canada.
Note: you can only withdraw money that has been in the RSP for at least 90days or you will be taxed on that portion.
2. First Time Buyers Tax Credit
Overview of Program
In 2009 this program was introduced and provides a non-refundable tax credit in the year you purchased and title was put in your name.
- you or your spouse or common-law partner acquired a qualifying home; and
- you did not live in another home owned by you or your spouse or common-law partner in the year of acquisition or any of the four preceeding years.
- persons with disabilities may also be eligible. Please see the link below to Revenue Canada's website for full details.
How do I get my credit?
It is entered into your tax return, be sure your Accountant/tax preparer know that you purchased a home.
Note: the credit can be split with your spouse or common-law partner.
3. First Time Home Buyers Incentive Plan
Overview of Program
In Sept 2019, the Federal Government introduced as part of the National Housing Strategy, the First-Time Home Buyer Incentive Plan. This program is a 3year initiative and will accept applications until Sept 2022 (must close by March 31, 2024). It is a shared equity program between the applicant/s and the Government on insured mortgages.
Main Details of Program
The applicants must have a min of 5% down payment from their own sources. Gifts are ok. Borrowed down payment programs do not qualify.
The Government will then provide funds towards the down payment of the home. If an existing home, a 5% incentive. If new construction, a 5 % or 10% incentive.
The applicant's are not responsible to repay the incentive until the property is sold or at after 25yrs. So while there are no payments on the incentive, at the sale of the property the incentive needs to be repaid based on the fair market value at that time - up or down. So if you bought at $400,000 and had taken a 5% incentive; then sold at $380,000 4 years later, you would need to repay 5% of $380,000. If the value goes up - you pay 5% of the increased value.
If the applicant has 5%, and the incentive provides 5%; the application is now 10% down which also reduces the insurer premium the applicant will pay.
An applicant can voluntarily pay back the incentive early but it must be done in one lump sum and an appraiser (at the applicants cost) will be required to determine fair market value.
Are there any applicant costs?
The incentive is registered with land titles as a second mortgage so any legal set up or closing out costs (ex. full appraisal if required) around this are the applicant's responsibility.
Who is eligible?
a first time home buyer (or, someone who has not (nor their spouse married or common-law) been on any land title in the last 4years or, someone who has recently gone through a breakdown of marriage or a common-law partnership).
Total qualifying income less than $120,000/yr
At least ONE of the applicants must be a first time buyer as indicated above.
There is a mortgage to income ratio, this ratio cannot exceed 4 and is calculated by:
first mortgage + incentive / total qualifying income.
Nikole automatically checks this program for you.