Did you know you have grants and rebates available to you?
You may qualify for some of these below.
1. Plan for Home Buyers
Use money from your RRSP towards the down payment on a home. If you are a qualified home buyer you may be able to take up to $25,000 out of your retirement fund. If you are purchasing as a couple, the limit is $50,000. Check with the Canada Revenue Agency website about this plan. Visit their site here and search for “Home Buyer’s Plan.” Or call them at 1.800.959.8287
2. New Homes Rebate on GST
People who are buying new homes may seek rebates of the five percent segment of the Harmonized Sales Tax (HST) that is federal tax, which is the GST. This applies if the home you are purchasing is priced under $350,000. You can get as much as 36 percent of that tax back or a maximum $6,300 rebate. Homes that cost over $350,000 but below $450,000 are eligible for a portion of the GST rebate. Canada’s Revenue Agency can advise you on this as well. Go to the website www.cra.gc.ca and type RC4028 in search. Or give them a call at 1 800 959 8287
3. Rebate of British Columbia’s HST On New Housing Purchases
If you are buying a new home or one that has had extensive remodelling and that home is priced less than $525,000 then you may qualify for a provincial HST rebate. (The rebate can be up to 71.43 percent of the provincial’s 7 percent). The maximum rebate is $26,250. This maximum rebate amount applies to homes $525,000 or more. To find out about this go to http://hst.blog.gov. bc.ca/faqs/new-housing rebate or give them a call at 1 800 959 8287
4. Apply for the Residential Rehabilitation Assistance Program (RRAP) or the Canada Mortgage and Housing (CMCH) Grants
If you are a senior, are physically challenged, own a rental property or want to create a garden or secondary addition to a substandard home you might be eligible for one of these grants. Repairs that qualify include upgrading fire safety standards, plumbing issues, electrical, structural and heating concerns. Federal financial aid is available to low income home owners. Go to www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca/en/co/prfinas/prfinas_001.cfm If you would rather call the numbers are toll free 1 800 668 2642 or locally 1 604 873 7408
5. Home Buyer Tax Credit for First Time Purchasers (HBTC)
Investigate the First Time Home Buyers tax credit. Qualifying buyers can take advantage of this income tax credit for new buyers. It is non-refundable. Purchases can include single family homes, attached homes, condos and apartments, mobiles or COOP housing. The credit is figured by taking the lowest income tax level (personal tax, in 2009 that was 15 percent) and multiplying it by $5,000.00. The maximum allowed credit for 2009 was $750. Call the Canada Revenue Agency at 1 800 959 8281 or use their website www.cra.gc.ca/hbtc
6. Grant for BC Home Owners
Properties that have been assessed at more than $1,050,000 may be eligible for a reduction in school property tax up to a maximum of $570. For homes valued in excess of that amount, grants are reduced $5.00 per every $1,000 over up until homes costing $1,640,000 or more. If you are a senior, physically or mentally challenged or a veteran, then you may be eligible for an additional $275 in credit. There is also a $5.00 reduction per every thousand with the cut-off being at homes with values starting at $1,219,000. The contact for this is the BC Ministry of Small Business and Revenue at their website www.rev.gov.bc.ca/hog You can also call your local tax office.
7. New Rental Housing Rebate (HST) in British Columbia
If you are buying rental housing that is either new or has been substantially renovated and are keeping it as rental housing then you may qualify for a 71.43 percent rebate of the HST’s provincial percentage. The maximum rebate is $26,250 per housing unit. Contact http://hst.blog.gov.bc.ca/faqs/new-housing-rebate or phone 1 800 959 8287.
8. First Time Home Purchaser’s Property Tax Transfer (PTT) Program
It is possible that if you are a first time, qualifying home buyer you may get an exemption from paying one percent of the PTT on the first $200,000 of the purchase price and an additional 2 percent on the remaining purchase price up to a maximum of $425,000. The exact amount of the exemption is calculated on a proportional basis for the homes purchased at between $200,000 and the $425,000 figure. For this exemption contact the BC Ministry of Small Business and Revenue at their website www.rev.gov.bc.ca/rpt or call 1 250 387 0604.
9. Refund of Premium for Mortgage Loan Insurance (CMHC)
If you contract a certified energy specialist to analyze and help you make improvements that make your home energy efficient, you may be able to receive monetary incentives through the Live Smart BC program. This is a joint effort between the province and energy companies such as Terasan Gas, Fortis BC and BC Hydro. For information go to www.livesmartbc.ca/rebates or call 1 866 430 8765
10. Energy Credit for BC Residences
If you as a homeowner or a residential landlord buy heating fuel for your property you should get a purchase point rebate from the BC government. This rebate is normally equal to the provincial portion of the Harmonized Sales Tax and is found on your utility bill. Website for this is . http://hst.blog.gov.bc.ca/faqs/energy-credit or you may call 1 604 660 4524
11. Deferment Programs for BC Property Tax
Seniors age 55 and over may be able to defer their property taxes under the Property Tax Deferment Program for Seniors. Two other programs, one for families with children (under the age of 18) and one for those with financial hardships may also help in deferment. Contact the BC Ministry of Small Business and Revenue at www.sbr.gov.bc.ca and type in “Property tax deferment” in the search field. You can also call your local tax office.
12. Appliance Rebates from BC Hydro
If you purchase an Energy-Star refrigerator, freezer, dishwasher or washer between June 1st of 2010 and March 31st of 2011 you may get a mail in rebate of $25 to $50. This rebate may end earlier if funds are exhausted. The website is www.bchydro.com/rebates_savings/appliance_rebates.html and phone is 1 800 224 9376.
13. Fridge Buy Back Program from BC Hydro (not the same as the rebates on appliances)
If you are turning in a working fridge that is between 10 and 24 cubic feet in size then you could get $30 through BC Hydro. Web site is www.bchydro.com/rebates_savings/fridge_buy_back.html and the phone is
1 604 881 4357
14. Savings Coupons and Mail in Rebates from BC Hydro
BC Hydro is offering rebates of different household items. These include 50 percent off of an Earth Massage showerhead or an E2 dual-flush toilet, 10 percent off the purchase price of a cordless phone with an Energy Star label and a $15 rebate for buying a clothes drying rack. Check on the website at http://www.bchydro.com/rebates_savings/coupons.html or call 1 800 224 9376 for deadlines.
15. Gas Rebate from Terasen
Terasen Gas is offering its own rebate program. Items include a gift card for $25 off getting your furnace serviced to a $50 rebate for replacing an old water heater and $150 off the cost of an EnerChoice fireplace. The company is also offering $1000 if you convert your home to natural gas and install a heating system with the Energy Star label. Visit www.terasengas.com/homes/Offers/LowerMainlandSquamish.html or call 1 888 224 2710
16. Incentives with SolarBC
If you have a solar water heater installed, get a $2,000 discount on the purchase of that water heater at your point of sale. The certificate is supplied by the contractor. This promo is valid until December 31st of 2010. Go to www.solarbc.ca/learn/incentives-costs or call 1 866 650 6527.
17. Solar Homes Pilot Program with City of Vancouver
A number of entities have gotten together to offer $3,500 towards the installation of a solar hot water system in their new home in the Vancouver area. This is about half the cost of the system. Participants include Offsetters, Terasen Gas, SolarBC and the City of Vancouver. The offer goes to the first 50 homes that apply between January 2010 and March of 2011. Building permits must be issued in 2010. Contact http://vancouver.ca/sustainability/SolarHomes.htm or 1 604 873 7748
18. Energy Saver RBC Mortgage
If you get an RBC Energy Saver Mortgage and within 90 days of accepting that mortgage you have an energy efficiency audit you may be eligible for $300 to be rebated into your RBC account. Contact Royal Bank at www.rbcroyalbank.com/products/mortgages/energy-saver-mortgage.html or call 1 800 769 2511.
19. Green Building Grant from Vancity
Vancity has teamed up with BC’s Real Estate Foundation and is offering grants as much as $50,000 to qualifying non-profits and charities for use in property improvements. These can include rebuilds, repairs and making structures more environmentally friendly. It can also cover education expenses when related to the study of green technology for use by the organization. Go to the website https://www.vancity.com/MyCommunity/NotForProfit/Grants/ActingOnClimateChange/GreenBuildingGrant or call the local number at 1 604 877 7000