Media Release

March 26, 2018
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Provincial Government Announces New Home Purchase Programs

Today the Honourable Tom Osborne, Minister of Finance and President of Treasury Board, along with the Honourable Lisa Dempster, Minister Responsible for the Newfoundland and Labrador Housing Corporation (NLHC), announced new programs to make it easier for new home buyers to purchase their first home.

As part of Budget 2018, $1 million has been allocated for a new Home Purchase Program. The program will provide grants of $3,000 to individuals and families to go toward the down payment of newly constructed or existing new homes never sold or occupied that are valued under $400,000 including HST. The 330 grants provided in 2018-19 will be issued to the first home buyers who apply and qualify.

The Home Purchase Program is intended to stimulate the economy and generate employment through new home construction and will begin on April 1, 2018. More details can be found in the backgrounder below.

The former Down Payment Assistance Program delivered by NLHC has been replaced with the First-time Homebuyers Program, placing greater focus on its goal to ensure home ownership is more accessible for first-time homebuyers. The program will be extended to March 31, 2019, with available funding of $1.25 million, and will assist an estimated 100 households to secure home ownership.

This extension will provide program enhancements designed to address the impact of new mortgage rules introduced by the federal government in October 2016. The enhancements include:

  • Increasing the average household income maximum for eligibility from $65,000 to $75,000 for full benefit and up to $85,000 for partial benefit;
  • Allowing for applicants to have a guarantor to support mortgage financing;
  • Requiring applicants to have pre-approval from a financial institution prior to applying for the program; and
  • Providing eligible households with five per cent of the purchase price of up to $250,000 for a new or existing home, and $2,000 of that funding will be a grant.

NLHC will accept applications for the First-time Homebuyers Program beginning April 1, 2018, and additional program information will be available at www.nlhc.nl.ca/programs/programsFhp.html .

These programs complement commitments outlined in The Way Forward: A Vision for Sustainability and Growth in Newfoundland and Labrador. The Way Forward guides Provincial Government actions to strengthen the province’s economic foundation and improve outcomes to promote a healthy and prosperous province.

Quotes
“The new Home Purchase Program will help Newfoundlanders and Labradorians achieve their dream of home ownership. Whether it is new families just starting out, a family looking to sell an existing property and move into a new home or retirees looking to downsize, this program will help people build for their futures. This program will also stimulate new home construction, in an industry that provides numerous jobs and countless economic benefits to our province. We remain committed to advancing initiatives that create jobs and strengthen our economy.”
Honourable Tom Osborne
Minister of Finance

“The First-time Homebuyers Program helps to bridge the affordability gap that can prevent moderate-income households from moving out of the rental market and into homeownership. Assisting these households with the minimum down payment on a home removes a primary barrier to home ownership for this income range.”
Honourable Lisa Dempster
Minister Responsible for the Newfoundland and Labrador Housing Corporation

“These new programs represent a significant investment in the lives of many Newfoundlanders and Labradorians, and are one part of the key role that Newfoundland and Labrador Housing Corporation plays in helping people along the housing continuum.”
Glenn Goss
Executive Director of the Newfoundland and Labrador Housing Corporation

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Learn More
Newfoundland and Labrador Housing Corporation – www.nlhc.nl.ca

Follow us on Twitter: @GovNL , @FIN_GovNL  and @CSSD_GovNL

Media contacts
Chrysta Collins
Finance
709-729-4839, 730-1568
chrystacollins@gov.nl.ca

Jenny Bowring
Newfoundland and Labrador Housing Corporation
709-724-3055
jmbowring@nlhc.nl.ca

BACKGROUNDER

Details on home buyers programs
As part of Budget 2018, the Provincial Government announced the new Home Purchase Program and enhancements to the newly renamed First-time Homebuyers Program to assist individuals and families become homeowners.

Home Purchase Program

  • $1 million has been allocated in 2018-19 for the new Home Purchase Program.
  • The program will provide grants of $3,000 to qualifying individuals and families to go toward the down payment of a new home valued up to $400,000 including HST.
  • The grant applies to homes that are to be newly constructed or existing new homes that have never been sold or previously occupied.
  • Program grants will be available for the first 330 home buyers who apply and qualify.
  • For recently constructed homes, never occupied, NLHC will require a copy of the Purchase and Sale Agreement.
  • For homes not yet constructed, NLHC will require an affidavit to be co-signed by the builder and new homeowner, confirming the date construction is completed and the final sale price including HST.
  • The program begins April 1, 2018.
  • For further details on the program, please contact NLHC’s Manager of Affordable Housing at 709-724-3059 or 709-724-3130

First-time Homebuyers Program

  • Replacing the former Down Payment Assistance Program, the First-time Homebuyer’s Program has been extended to March 31, 2019.
  • Available funding of $1.25 million will assist an estimated 100 household’s secure home ownership.
  • Program enhancements include:
    • Increasing the average household income maximum for eligibility from $65,000 to $75,000 for full benefit and up to $85,000 for partial benefit;
    • Allowing for applicants to have a guarantor to support mortgage financing;
    • Requiring applicants to have pre-approval from a financial institution prior to applying for the program, and
    • Providing eligible households with five per cent of the purchase price of up to $250,000 for a new or existing home, and $2,000 of that funding will be a grant.
  • NLHC will accept applications beginning April 1, 2018.