The Home Buyers’ Amount (HBA) is a non-refundable credit that allows first-time purchasers of homes, and purchasers with disabilities, to claim up to $5,000 in the year when they purchase a home.
The non-refundable tax credit rate of 15% means the actual reduction of your taxes will be $750. If your federal taxes are less than $750, your credit will be reduced accordingly since it is a non-refundable credit.
You can divide the credit between your return and your spouse or common-law partner’s return, but the combined total claimed cannot be greater than $5,000.
Who is Eligible for the First-Time Home Buyers Tax Credit?
You, and anyone you purchase the home with, must be considered a first time home buyer to be eligible for the tax credit. The home must be used as your principal residence, and if you purchase with your spouse, common-law partner, or even a friend, then either one of you can claim the credit (or share it). However, the combined total cannot exceed $750.
What is a qualifying home?
To qualify for the HBTC, a home must be a housing unit located in Canada, including mobile homes, condominiums, and apartments. A share in a co-operative housing corporation that entitles you to possess, and gives you an equity interest in, a housing unit located in Canada also qualifies. However, a share that only provides you with a right to tenancy in the housing unit does not qualify.
Also, you must intend to occupy the home or you must intend that the related person with a disability occupy the home as a principal place of residence no later than one year after it is acquired.
How to Claim the First-Time Home Buyers Tax Credit?
You claim the HBTC On Schedule 1 when you file your Canadian income tax return. For more details. see Home Buyers’ Amount from the Canada Revenue Agency.
The home must be registered in your or your spouse's or common-law partner's name in accordance with the applicable land registration system. Claimants should ensure that documentation supporting the purchase transaction is available if requested by the Canada Revenue Agency. Claimants are also responsible for making sure that all applicable eligibility conditions are met.
Keep the HBTC in mind when you consider buying a Canadian home. It’s just another great reason to take the final step of real estate homeownership.