Home Renovation Tax Credit for Seniors and Persons with Disabilities Frequently Asked Questions

The following will help answer your questions about the B.C. home renovation tax credit for seniors and persons with disabilities.

Does the insulation or painting of a bedroom or bathroom qualify? 

It depends. For example, if it's necessary to put an additional bedroom or bathroom on the main floor to enable a senior or a person with a disability to gain access to it, then general renovation costs necessary to do so would be eligible. However, if an existing bedroom is simply being painted, then these expenses fall into the category of general maintenance and don't qualify. 

Does flooring replacement qualify?

It depends. Flooring qualifies if the replacement improves the use of a walker or wheelchair. Flooring doesn’t qualify if it’s regular flooring replacement (e.g. replacement of carpets).

Does the installation of a new furnace or heating system on the first floor qualify?

No. A new furnace or heating system doesn't qualify because house appliances aren't eligible for the credit.

I live in a condo. Are expenses incurred to modify a common area of my condo eligible?

Yes, expenses to renovate the common area of a condo may be eligible expenses to the extent of your share of the eligible expenses. The condominium corporation or association must notify you, in writing, of your share of those eligible expenses. 

My property is held in a trust. Are expenses to modify my property eligible?

Yes, you can claim the portion of eligible expenses related to your home, as long as the trust has notified you, in writing, of your share of the expense.

I am a landlord. Can I claim this credit for improvements I make to my tenants' apartments?

No, only a senior, a person with a disability, or a family member who lives with them is eligible to claim the credit. A landlord renting a home to a senior or a person with a disability isn't eligible for the credit. 

Can an attendant or nursing home claim this credit on behalf of a senior or a person with a disability for improvements made to their residences?

No, only a senior, a person with a disability, or a family member who lives with them is eligible to claim the credit. An attendant or nursing home isn't eligible for the credit.

Can a co-op housing development corporation claim this credit on behalf of seniors or persons with disabilities for improvements made to their residences?

No, only a senior, a person with a disability, or a family member who lives with them is eligible to claim the credit. A co-op housing development corporation isn't eligible to claim the credit.

If you are a senior, a person with a disability, or a family member, you may be able to claim the credit to the extent of your share of the eligible expenses. The co-op housing development corporation must notify you, in writing, of your share of those eligible expenses.

Is this credit income tested?

No, the credit isn't reduced by income above a specified amount. 

Some of my eligible expenses are also eligible for the medical expense tax credit. Can I claim both the medical expense tax credit and the home renovation tax credit for seniors and persons with disabilities in respect of these expenses for the same tax year?

Yes, the home renovation tax credit can be claimed for all eligible expenses during the tax year up to a maximum of $10,000, even if a portion or all of those expenses were also eligible expenses for the purpose of claiming the medical expense tax credit during that same tax year. 

Can I do the renovations myself?

Yes, you can claim qualifying materials for a "Do-It-Yourself" renovation as an eligible expense. You can't allocate a cost for the labour you performed for that renovation and claim it as an eligible expense. 

My spouse and I are renovating our home and are sharing the costs. Can we each claim the credit?

Yes, as long as the total amount of eligible expenses claimed by you and your spouse doesn't exceed $10,000. If you and your spouse have eligible expenses of more than $10,000, you must agree between yourselves how to allocate the maximum $10,000 of eligible expenses, otherwise the allocation will be made for you.

If I have eligible expenses for a house that I sold and also have eligible expenses for my new house, would both sets of expenses qualify for the credit?

Yes, eligible expenses for both dwellings would qualify for the credit. However, the maximum amount of eligible expenses you can claim for a tax year is $10,000.

I am renovating my parents' home and live in the same dwelling. My parents are both seniors. Can I claim the credit?

Yes, you can claim the credit for eligible expenses for your parents' dwelling as long as that dwelling is your principal residence. 

My parents and I live in the same dwelling and are sharing the renovation costs. Can we all claim the credit?

Yes, any of you can claim the credit. However, the total amount of eligible expenses you and your parents can claim can't exceed $10,000. If you and your parents incur eligible expenses of more than $10,000, you must agree among yourselves how to allocate the maximum $10,000 of eligible expenses, otherwise the allocation will be made for you.

My parent passed away prior to turning 65 but would have been 65 by the end of the year. Can we claim the credit for eligible expenses that my parent had for the year? 

Yes, as long as your parent would have turned 65 by the end of the tax year and you met all other eligibility requirements, you, your parent, or both of you can claim the credit for the eligible expenses before he or she passed away. The total amount of eligible expenses claimed by you and your parent can't exceed $10,000. 

My parent incurred eligible expenses during the year but passed away before they turned 65. Can a credit still be claimed on my parent's return for the year of death? 

Yes, as long as your parent would have turned 65 in the year he or she passed away and your parent met all other eligibility requirements, the credit can be claimed on the final return for the year he or she passed away.

My brother and I live in the same dwelling and are sharing the renovation costs. My brother has a disability. Can we both claim the credit?

Yes, you, your brother or both of you can claim the credit. However, the total amount of eligible expenses you and your brother can claim can't exceed $10,000. If you and your brother incur eligible expenses of more than $10,000, you must agree between yourselves how to allocate the maximum $10,000 of eligible expenses, otherwise the allocation will be made for you.

I declared bankruptcy during the year that I had eligible renovations done. Can I still claim the credit? 

Yes, if you meet the eligibility requirements, you can claim the credit for all eligible expenses on all income tax returns filed for the year. The total amount of the credits claimed on all income tax returns filed for the year can't exceed $1,000. 

I was resident in Canada during only part of the year. Can I claim the credit? 

Yes, if you meet the eligibility requirements, you can claim the credit but only for the expenses you incurred during the part of the year that you were a resident in Canada.