Nova Scotians have many blessings: Peggy’s Cove, Celtic music, and big men wearing small kilts. But did you know that homeowners in the province are also able to get government grants to make home improvements?
Homeowners in Nova Scotia can get more than $35,000 in government grants and rebates (and check out the additional rebates at the end of this article).
The RRAP (Residential Rehabilitation Assistance Program) was set up by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation to encourage homeowners to create “secondary suites” in their homes, and rent them out to low-income seniors and people with disabilities.
The $24,000 is a forgivable loan – as long as the program requirements are being met (i.e. you’re renting to a low-income senior or person with a disability) you don’t have to pay back the loan. And at the end of 15 years, you can rent to whoever you want.
- GST/HST New Housing Rebate (1.5% of GST/HST)
Don’t let the name of this one fool you – this is not just for new-home builders. The New Housing rebate is meant to defray part of the GST/HST paid on a new house OR substantially renovating an existing house.
Assuming you’re doing $100,000 worth of renovations to your home, you would get back $1,500 through this rebate.
Nova Scotians have an especially sweet deal with this rebate. In all other provinces, homeowners can only get this rebate if the value of their home is below $450,000- but this doesn’t apply to Nova Scotians.
This is a pretty straightforward program: convert your furnace and water heater to natural gas, and get a $2,000 rebate.
With this program, homeowners can get up to $1,500 in government rebates when they make energy-saving improvements to their home. Examples of improvements include improving the insulation in your home, installing energy-efficient windows, and replacing your old furnace.
- Genworth Financial Energy-Efficient Housing Program or CMHC Mortgage Loan Insurance Refund (10% of mortgage insurance premium)
Canada’s two main mortgage insurance outfits (Genworth Financial, and Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation), will take 10% off your mortgage insurance premium if you buy an energy efficient home, or do energy-saving improvements to your current home.
Assuming you have a $400,000 mortgage on your home, you could get back $1,100.
- ecoENERGY Retrofit Grant ($5,000)
The federal government will give you rebates for doing energy-saving renovations to your home, up to a maximum of $5,000. The amount you get back depends on what kinds of home improvements you make. Examples of renovations that pay include installing an energy-efficient furnace, installing better insulation, and sealing drafts in your windows and doors.
Show Me the Green – 3 Steps to $35,100
Now that you know about these grants, what do you do next? Follow the steps below to quickly and easily claim your rebates:
- Find out how to apply for the seven grants and rebates
ShowMeTheGreen.ca has a brief description and simple steps to follow to apply for each of the grants and rebates mentioned in this article. Click on the links to each rebate above (but read steps 2 and 3 first!)
- Save your favourites
When you’re on the Description page for each grant and rebate, click on the little “Add to Favorites” button that’s next to the rebate title. This will save a copy of the page for you to get later.
When you’re finished saving all of the rebates, click on “Show Favorites”. You’ll be asked if you want to print all of the rebates, or save them to your computer.
- Follow the steps
Each rebate includes the steps you need to take to submit your application to each rebate program.
That’s it! Pick and choose from this list of grants and rebates, or be ambitious and go for them all.