Residential Rehabilitation Assistance Program for Secondary/Garden Suites

Suburban home

Province/Territory: National

Rebate Amount: Not a rebate, a $24,000 forgivable loan

Get a $24,000 forgivable loan toward the construction of a rental unit in your home. Once completed, the unit must be rented out to a low-income senior, or person with a disability.

The purpose of the Residential Rehabilitation Assistance Program (RRAP) for Secondary/Garden Suites is to create affordable housing for low-income seniors and adults with a disability.

Some important things to keep in mind about the RRAP:

  • Work carried out before the RRAP loan is approved is not eligible.
  • You must rent the unit out to a low-income senior, or person with a disability, for 15 years
  • There’s a cap on the amount of rent you can charge the tenant (for example in Ottawa the cap for a one-bedroom unit rented to one person is $815 per month)

Steps to Get This Rebate:

  1. Take a look at this sample application
  2. Fill out the RRAP application package
  3. Make sure you have everything by looking through this checklist
  4. To see all of the application documents, FAQs, and guides, go here

When the Rebate Ends:


For More Information:

RRAP website

List of telephone numbers for CMHC regional centres

Related Rebates


  1. Mrs C. Long says

    Hello, I was wondering how to get money to add a “grannie suite” on to my mother’s house so she won’t need the stairs any more. I will also have to redo the inside of her 100 year old home to get it updated for my families needs. How does one get grants for seniors to do this? I have a few months to get information, I want to start fixing up this summer.

    Any help would be nice,
    Mrs. C. Long

  2. Mark says

    Hello Mrs. Long,

    Thanks for your question.

    I would advise you to apply for the Residential Rehabilitation Assistance Program. The Program provides up to $24,000 in a “forgivable loan” for the creation of a secondary/garden suite, as long as you’re renting to a low-income senior (or person with a disability).

    The program also allows you to rent to a family member (e.g. in your case, your mother), as long as she falls into the “low-income” category.

    To get more information on the program, and download the program documents, go to the RRAP Request for Applications page.

    Hope that helps,


  3. Diana Player says

    just found this site and wondering if the monies will also cover the cost of installing a chiar lift on stairs to convert a lower level into a granny suite? Can you advise me

  4. Mark says

    Hi Vivi,

    Thanks for visiting the site. Could you provide a little more detail on the renovation you’re planning?


  5. grant trolly says

    i’m looking at purchasing a residential property that would be big enough for my family and for two secondary suites. is it possible to qualify for two $24000 loans for the same property if creating two self-contained apartments that are handicap accessible and will be rented to low-income seniors or disabled persons?

    thanks for your help
    grant trolly

  6. Donna Duncan says

    I am considering buying a home and renovating the basement into a one bedroom apartment for a low income senior 56 years of age. Would I be eligible for this loan?

  7. tamara ireland says

    hi i am writing to find out what i can possibly do to help my foster mother stay in her home. Joyce lever is a 84 year old woman and her home is all shes got. it would be hard for her to give it up, so i am trying to find resources for her. her home is really old and falling apart. it is constamtly flooding and it seems as if it is sinking right in the middle. She is a foster parent for teenage girls, and doesn’t plan on stopping any time soon. Repairs for the house are too expensive for her to pay, with the pension that she gets. We are looking to see if there is any grants tha tcould possibly help. please get back to me at: tara_ma_su@hotmail. com

  8. says

    What is the age the senior has to be to qualify for the residentil grant can hey still be working…and can they share common areas like kitchen with rights to the rest of my home bath and laundry with the homeowner.So I guess I would like to build a livingroom and bedroom off the back of my house for them wih rights to the rest of my home for their personal use..

  9. Laurie Golocevac says

    Hi, I am wondering if an in home elevator system for our 15 yr old disabled son is covered through this program. He cannot use a chair lift as his coordination is too severe. Please let me know as he will be living in this home with us for his entire life.

  10. rustam jiwan says

    Hello. Please provide info about getting some financial assistance
    to install an elevator in my calgary home to accomodate
    my 84 year father in law. TXS.

  11. Jo-Anne Carrol says

    My Mother is 77 yrs. she needs to have a certain amount of care and cannot live on her own anymore. I would need to install a separate unit in order for her to live with me. She doesn’t do stairs well do to a balance problem. She would need a separate bed-sit and bath. My home is not built to accomodate handicaps of any kind, there are stairs in and two sets of stairs between bedrooms, living area and recreation/laundry area. It would mean adding on a ramp or ground access unit. Any advice would be much appreciated.
    Thank you

  12. Chris or Pat Ramdin says

    We have done many renovations in our home to accomodate elderly and handicapped but have never applied for any type of assistance. Currently we have one gentleman who has resided with us for approximately 15 years. He suffers from schizophrenia and now dementia. He is 67 years of age. We have one woman who is 86 years of age this year and we converted our garage into a bedroom for her as she has a walker and cannot use stairs. We had to put in a ramp for her. We hage another gentleman who suffers from emotional illness and lives with us on a temporary basis when he cannot cope. My husband is retired on a disability income with very poor help but we both maintain the care of our clients. We are currently renovating our bathroom, need to renovate a bedroom for a couple who are looking for a home and also need to improve the wheelchair ramp that we have going into our home. We also did renovate our powder room on the main floor and added a shower so that our elderly client would have her shower on her level. Up to now we have never had any help from the govenment, but we are struggling and I would like to know if there is any help available to us. We are an incorporated business which we did when we first started our business. Our name is “Good Samaritan Boarding and Lodging Home.” Can you please let me know what assistance is availale to us. I went back to school to obtain a Personal Support Worker Certificate. Our bathroom renovation we are cuurently undergoing is $10,000. Thank you.

  13. Laurie says

    Just wondering if I could qualify for some kind of grant for the grany suite, which is in the house I purchased,I am a single mother and have two children, and now have found out two years later that the septic system doesn’t support the extra people in the house and water features etc. We need a complete new one Installed being told will be arround 25000.00 to 30000.00 to replace. My parents are 81 and 82 one being with a disability. Is there any help here you think I may be intitled too.

  14. Nora says

    Just wondering if I can get a grant for grany suite for my disabiled adult son.

  15. lorna says

    was wondering if there is a program that will help with siding and windows on a house we have.winter gets very drafty and therefore cost alot to heat.
    my husband cannot do the work on account of he has degenerative disc in his back and now has been diagnosed with cirrosis of the there anyone that can help us as we are in a bind and on a fixed disability income.. thanks so much for your suggestions and help

  16. sharon csernak says

    Is it possible to get a grant for a secondary suite to be used by a family member. (not necessarily senior nor disabled) My husband is the disabled and senior person, and we are the homeowners who need help in order to stay in our home.

  17. Jim & Bonnie Scali says

    To Whom It May Concern;

    Upon reading the application form required to apply for your “Residential Rehabillitation Assistance Program for Secondary/ Garden Suites”, I saw that the amount given is twenty-four thousand dollars in the form of an “Unforgivable Loan”. In another area of a form it is written that if you live in a Northern Ontario area, that you can possibly receive more, and If you live in a more remote Northern Ontario area, that you may receive more funding. Can you reilerate a little bit more on this, and let both myself and my husband know in what areas you are referring to.

    We live in Sault Ste.Marie, Ontario, and would like to know if that is considered a “Northern Area” location . We did not know of this type of” Unforgivable Loan”.

    We have been in the thinking stage of possibly, renovating part of our basement into an little apartment for my husbands mother who will be 83 as of October 5th. of this year. It would a great help if we could receive some asssistance towards this.

    We now have a 3 piece bathroom, and laundry room in the basement, the bathroom would have to have hand grips put in the shower stall for her, and possibly a new configuration figured out, where to put the new entrance door to the bathroom, to do the other renovations needed. Would the grant cover this expense?

    Does this grant cover just the essential things that are needed, like a bedroom. bathroom, kitchen or kitchenette, flooring, closet etc., or can a gas fireplace be included in this renovation grant, as my mother-in-law has mentioned at times, this is something that would be nice or would this come out of our own funds?

    We would like to know, what would be our first step toward this project, applying first to see if we are eligible, or finding out what the costs of the renovation project would be, including taxes and work permits etc.

    Yours truly

    Jim & Bonnie Scali

  18. Jennie says

    I would like to know if there is help or a grant available to make my basement into a rentable unit. I am the homeowner and also the disabled person. I am single, I do work full time but still find it hard to make ends meet. Thank you for any information.

  19. janet VanTol says

    I would like to know the if renovation grant will help me with a addition to my home, I have a disability. I want to build a therapy room where I can go to help with the severe headaches and severe neck and lower back pain. Im on CPP Disability and unable to work. I need this room to help me coupe with the daily pain. Thank you Janet

  20. Kiersyn McEwen says

    My mother-inlaw and i are very interested in adding a suite to her home. And i was just wondering once i print and fill out the application where exactly do i send it out too?


    Best regard


  21. says


    My friends home in Ontario burnt down last week. Leaving him and his family with nothing.

    I was wondering if you might be able to help me find an organization or grant that would be able to help them rebuild their home.

    Thank you for your time – if anyone knows any ideas please let me know – thank


  22. Liz says

    My mother has been living with me for the past 5/6 years. We have a basment in which I was wondering if I would qualify for the renovation grant. My mother receives pensions and is also somewhat disabled. Could you please give me some insight?

  23. says

    My mother is on disability and separated with her husband of 30 years, she has moved in with us, but the basement isn’t finished, we did make a bedroom for her but we wanted to make a livingroom & bathroom with a shower downstairs, maybe a small frige she can’t cook for herself right now she been in physio for 1 year +.My mother was in a very bad car accident & it would be nice for her to have some privacy & bathroom & shower so she doesn’t have to keep going up & down the stairs & she wouldn’t have to wait if the bathroom is in use. We only have 1 and sometimes she can’t wait.Would we qualify for a grant or assistance on a forgivable loan? Thank you for your time Peggy

  24. Jim says

    I was interested in purchasing an unfinished duplex type of building with 8 apartments. Can I convert 2 of them into Residential Rehabilitation Assistance Program for Secondary/Garden Suites and apply for the loan?


  25. denis tousignant says

    I apply for this grant I was acepted and qualified for the grant but was disqualified cause unstructural sound house this is why I told then I wanted to do was a basement under my house to improve on heating and have the house sit on solid foundation and roof need desperated repair but the people that deserve these grant dont get it i im on a disabilty income is there any help out there

  26. Tammy says

    My Husband is disabled. We purchased a house that is over 50 years old. We have had some work done. However, the windows are the originals and the wood is rotting around them. The curtain move from the drafts. Is there any help we could get with the cost of replacing them?

  27. Shawn says

    Hi, I have a few questions about the RRAP grant and was hoping I could get some answers.

    1) Is the RRAP grant still available as of March 24\2014

    2) Can you get the RRAP grant if you own the property and you are the one applying for the grant.

    3) If a disabled person and a 65 year old buy a house together and the house has a inlaw suit and both are going to be living there, can they both apply for the RRAP grant and each get $24,000.

  28. Mohan Narain says


    I own a 11 unit apartment building that houses tenants with disabilities and welfare.I would like to build two more apartments.Is there funding available for this?


    Mohan Narain

  29. Anne Phillips says

    I am Disabled and need home repairs however I can not afford to have the necessary repairs done …like outside hydro box wires and breaker box coming from the meter to the house are needing replaced, I have noticed where it looks like they have gotten overheated and badly scorched at some point recently, and that would also explain our high cost in our recent hydro bill. Could you please inform me of any financial assistance that is available for a low income home owner. your advise will be greatly appreciated Thank You Anne Phillips.

  30. glen pero says

    With the RRAP grant, it says that the suite is to be rented to a disabled person or a senior, what is the acceptable definition of a senior, further, it states that it must be rented for 15 years, what happens is the disabled person passes or moves out and an immediate tennant cannot be found?

  31. Cheryl Birchard says

    I understand RRAP is no longer available? I’m living in BC and want to make a basement suite for my two disabled sons. Is there a similar program available?
    Thank you
    Cheryl Birchard


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