Making our homes accessible is incredibly important in maintaining our independence, health and well-being. Unfortunately, there are still costs associated with transforming our homes into safe spaces. We’ve compiled a list below of available tax credits to ease some of the expenses.
Home Accessibility Tax Credit (HATC)
This is a federal tax credit for those renovating their home for safety and accessibility. The Home Accessibility Tax Credit (HATC) is for eligible individuals with disabilities (qualified for the disability tax credit) and people who are 65 years of age or older at the end of the year. Previously, you could claim up to $10,000 and receive a $1,500 tax credit. For the 2022 and subsequent taxation years, the Budget proposes to increase the annual expense limit of the HATC to $20,000, which would provide a tax credit of up to $3,000. You claim the HATC when filing your annual tax return, so make sure you hang on to all of your receipts!
A qualifying renovation is an alteration of an enduring nature and is integral to the eligible dwelling (including the land that forms part of the eligible dwelling). Examples that should qualify include:
Grab bars and safety rails
Step-in or walk-in bathtub
Non-slip flooring or anti-slip treatments
Switching to lever-style handles or faucets
Widening your doorways
Labour costs from professionals
Permits for construction, and building plans
Building materials and fixtures
Outdoor or indoor ramps
Lowering kitchen or bathroom cabinets so the person can use them
Equipment rentals and more
Read more about the HATC from the Government of Canada here, and for further information on eligibility, qualifying renovations and filing.
Medical Expense Tax Credit (METC)
You may have an eligible renovation that also qualifies as a medical expense. If so, you can claim both the federal Medical Expense Tax Credit (METC) and the home accessibility tax credit (HATC). While these costs to renovate a home to accommodate the use of a wheelchair may qualify as medical expenses, types of expenses related to other impairments may also qualify. In all cases, keep receipts and any related documents to support your claim. Read more at the Government of Canada, here.
The Multigenerational Home Tax Credit
For the 2023 and subsequent taxation years, you can claim a Multigenerational Home Renovation Tax Credit (MHRTC), to assist with the cost of renovating an eligible dwelling to create a secondary unit that helps a qualifying individual (a senior or an adult who is eligible for the disability tax credit) to live with a qualifying relative. You can claim up to $50,000 in qualifying expenditures for each qualifying renovation that is completed. The tax credit is 15% of your costs, up to a maximum of $7,500, for each claim you are eligible to make.
A “secondary unit” is a self-contained housing unit with a private entrance, kitchen, bathroom facilities and sleeping area.
The Disability Tax Credit (DTC)
The disability tax credit (DTC) is a non-refundable tax credit that helps persons with disabilities or their supporting persons reduce the amount of income tax they may have to pay. An individual may claim the disability amount once they are eligible for the DTC. This amount includes a supplement for persons under 18 years of age at the end of the year.
The purpose of the DTC is to provide for greater tax equity by allowing some relief for disability costs since these are unavoidable additional expenses that other taxpayers don’t have to face.
If you are eligible for the DTC, you may be able to claim both the (1) HATC and (2) METC for the same renovation or accessibility modifications! We encourage you to reach out to your financial planner or accountant to discuss.
Ontario Assistive Device Program
While this isn't applicable to renovations, it's important to be aware of the Assistive Devices Program, which provides consumer centered support and funding to Ontario residents who have long-term physical disabilities.
Devices covered by the program are intended to enable people with physical disabilities to increase their independence through access to assistive devices responsive to their individual needs. Initial access is often through a medical specialist or general practitioner who provides a diagnosis. In most device categories, an authorizer assesses the specific needs of the person and prescribes appropriate equipment or supplies.
Easter Seals Ontario provides programs and services to children and youth with physical disabilities across Ontario to help them achieve greater independence, accessibility and integration.
March of Dimes
Funded by the government of Ontario, the Home and Vehicle Modification® Program helps people living in Ontario pay for crucial renovations and retrofits. This includes anything from widening doorways for a wheelchair to modifying a van so someone who uses an assistive device can drive it. The goal is to keep people at home and in their communities. Find out more about the application process, and whether you’re eligible here.
March of Dimes Canada Assistive Devices Program assists adults with physical disabilities who are in financial need to purchase assistive devices that increase their mobility and functional independence.
Other potential savings or rebates (for accessible or non-accessible renovations):
Ontario energy and property tax credit (OEPTC)
The OEPTC is designed to help low- to moderate-income Ontario residents with the sales tax on energy and with property taxes. The annual entitlement is usually divided by 12 and issued monthly as part of the Ontario trillium benefit (OTB) payment.
Ontario Senior Homeowners' Property Tax Grant (OSHPTG)
The OSHPTG is available to Ontario senior homeowners who pay property taxes and who have low or moderate incomes. It is an annual payment that seniors must apply for each year when they file their income tax and benefit return.
Enbridge Home Efficiency Rebate
Enbridge Gas and the Canada's Greener Homes Grant have partnered to provide rebates towards eligible retrofits such as home insulation, windows and doors, heat pumps and renewable energy systems.
Are we missing anything? Please let us know and we'll add it to our list!