Multigenerational Home Renovation Tax Credit

It is no secret we have a severe housing shortage.  So what is a multigenerational home? It is essentially a home where several generations of a family live together.  This is very common in other parts of the world and only starting to become popular here now in areas like Paris Ontario and Brantford Ontario.  In fact several of the councillors in Brant County have been advocating for this for some time.   It make sense in so many ways.  Above and beyond simply making homes affordable being shared by more than just one family, they offer other benefits such as elderly people able to live independently with the assistance from family vs private care or nursing homes.  The problem is most homes are not set up for this.  Let’s be realistic, sure we want to help our parents but do we want to share a kitchen with them?  Being able to renovate your home to allow for two independent residences is key to making this work and surviving together in the future.

So all this is great in theory but not everyone has the cash sitting around to drop in a second kitchen etc.  To help with this in 2022 Federal government will introduce a tax credit that is applicable to these costs.   The proposed tax credit would allow for a 15% credit on up to $50,000 of eligible renovation expenses.  Every little bit helps!  

Keep in mind you will need to have your dwelling and project approved prior so make sure you are eligible prior to knocking down walls!  The tax credit is meant for closely related people such as parents, children and siblings. 

Owning a home could be the difference between millennials retiring or not

Owning a home could make all the difference between millennials having enough money to retire or being forced to work longer than their parents did.

If millennials — who today are in their late 20s to early 40s — rent throughout their working lives, then they must save a lot more than homeowners in order to retire in their 60s, according to the 2023 Mercer Retirement Readiness Barometer.

“This is a generation where being able to retire is one of the top three challenges when we look at unmet needs,” Jillian Kennedy, partner and leader of defined contribution and financial wellness at Mercer Canada, said April 12.

Mercer estimated that a millennial who rents would need to save eight times their salary over the course of their career to be able to retire at age 68. Meanwhile, peers who own a home would need to set aside 5.25 times their salary and would be “retirement ready” at age 65. To arrive at the savings rates, Mercer assumed a starting salary of $60,000 and contributions of 10 per cent of salary per month to a savings plan starting at age 25.

There’s a direct line between homeownership and a quality retirement.

“Homeownership gives retirees flexibility, as retirees who downsize may be able to access a significant amount of money. Renters, conversely, must pay rent every month or face eviction – whether they are 25 years old or 85 years old,” Mercer said in a press release.

Saving eight times one’s salary is “probably not” achievable, Kennedy acknowledged. “If you take a look at the difference, it’s safer to say the homeowner in retirement is going to have better quality of life and a much lower likelihood of running out of assets.”

Mercer defines retirement readiness as a 75 per cent probability of having enough money to last until death. That equates to 66 per cent of pre-retirement income maintained while retired, including government benefits, for a boomer, and 69 per cent for a millennial.

Savings aren’t the only problem. For many Canadians, not just millennials, owning a home is unaffordable.

Economists at National Bank calculated that, nationally, mortgage payments as a percentage of income on a “representative” home stood at 64.6 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2022.

Housing is considered “affordable” when its costs account for roughly one-third of disposable income.

Even Canadians who share living quarters with a roommate or partner struggle with housing affordability, according to a report released April 4 by Toronto-Dominion Bank.

The study found that 56 per cent of Canadians living with a roommate were doing so to save money. Almost 80 per cent also said it would be tough to rent if they were living solo.

Despite all the challenges millennials face, there’s still hope they can retire comfortably, but the path might change.

“The one thing I would say, this a resilient generation and we could see over time they adapt,” Kennedy said.

” Do I have to own a home? Maybe I can rent and own a cottage?’ I’ve heard about co-owning. I think we will see this concept of a linear lifestyle of graduating, getting a job and owning a home completely change. The effect will be felt across society and we will have to adapt to that.”

Gigi Suhanic


Did the market just flip?  May 20, 2022

I am not revealing any deep secrets when I say the housing market in Paris, Brantford and Brant County has been a roller coaster ride over the past two years.  The same has been the case with many things, the pandemic shook just about everything to its core.  The difference with this ride is that it has been stuck on the long upward climb, the one where you are holding your breath to the point of nearly passing out before the big gravity defying fall.

So here we are, april 16 here we are with the most inventory in months , properties with conditional offers , many indicators of a more normal/balanced market… Here we sit, waiting , watching wondering what the next few months will bring.  

First let’s look at where we are today.  The difference between the mid-winter market and today is night and day.  This change is generally associated with the Bank of Canada raising interest rates.  In January and February of this year almost every single house that went on the market was getting multiple offers much higher than the asking price.  Last week, the Toronto Regional Real Estate Board reported that sales in April dropped by about 41 percent from April of 2021.  Sales are also down 27 percent from just one month prior.  That is a stiff drop!

Now, that does not mean that the market is bottoming out.  It is mostly related to people sitting on the sidelines waiting to see what will happen.  “Should we buy now or wait until next month when the prices might be lower”.

If you are trying to buy a home in Paris, Brantford or Brant County then this is good news for you.  We are seeing fewer multiple offers in the market, in some cases houses selling on a single offer.

So how should you proceed on an offer?  One of the best clues is to see if the home is holding offers on a given date or if they are accepting offers anytime.  If they are accepting offers anytime you can expect the home to sell for somewhere around the asking price.  Who knows, you might even get it for a little under.

If you are thinking of buying, now is a fantastic time to do so.  Sure, prices might go down a little next month but who knows, maybe we will be under another lockdown and starting all over again!  The best advice I can give is to do what is right today, who knows what tomorrow will bring.

What is happening in the Real Estate Market in May 2022?

Why are the sold signs in Paris, Brantford and Brant County Real Estate not moving as quick as they once were?