Buying your second home? You may still be a first-time home buyer.

No, we’re not kidding you! Read on to learn more.

Buying a home can be stressful, and with increasing house prices, qualifying for a home can seem impossible. Luckily, there are people (ahem!) and programs available that can help make home ownership more attainable for first-time home buyers – even if you’ve previously purchased a home.

How is that possible?

It’s all in the definitions. 

First up is the Home Buyers’ Plan, which has been around the longest and is arguably the most well known. This incentive permits you to withdraw up to $35,000 (within a given calendar year) from your RRSP to buy or build a (qualifying) home for yourself or a relative with a disability. Under this plan, you are considered a first-time home buyer if in the four-year period (commencing January 1 of the fourth year prior to the year you withdraw the money and ending 31 days prior to the date you withdraw the money) you did not inhabit a home owned by either yourself or your current spouse or common-law partner. 

Next up is the First-Time Home Buyers' (FTHB) tax credit, which provides for a $5000 income tax credit for a qualifying home (amounting to up to $750 in federal tax respite for purchase costs.) You may be eligiblefor this incentive if you are both a first-time home buyer as per the definition above AND you/your spouse/your common-law partner acquired a qualifying home. 

Finally, there’s the Government of Canada’s newest housing incentive: the First-Time Home Buyer Incentive. Qualified first-time home buyers with the minimum down payment for a (secured) mortgage can apply to finance part of their home via a shared equity mortgage with the federal government. Under this program, you are considered a first-time home buyer if you meet ONE of the following criteria: you’ve never purchased a home; your marriage or common-law partnership is collapsing; or you did not inhabit a home owned by either yourself or your current spouse or common-law partner within the last four years. 

Clear as mortar? Helping people secure mortgages to attain homes of their own is our passion. Whether you’re looking to purchase your first home or fifth, we’d love to meet you and help you fulfill your home-owning dreams!

This article is in the category: General.

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