Ontario Renovates Program for Homeowners

The Homeowner Ontario Renovates offers financial assistance to low-income households who own and occupy substandard housing to enable them to repair their dwellings to a minimum level of health and safety. 

The Person with Disabilities Ontario Renovates offers financial assistance to households occupied by persons with disabilities who require special modifications to improve accessibility to their residence.

Homeowners may apply if the value of their house is below a certain value and if their household income is at or below certain levels that are based on the number of people in the household. Eligibility is limited to properties in need of major repair in one or more of the following categories: Structural, Electrical, Plumbing, Heating and Fire Safety.

Program criteria includes but is not limited to:

  • applicants must own and occupy the home, which requires work, as their sole and principal residence;
  • maximum total household Canadian and foreign gross annual income at or below $60,000;
  • total household Canadian and foreign assets at or below $10,000;
  • the assessed value of the home must not exceed $250,000;
  • the mortgage, property taxes, and home insurance must be paid up-to-date; with no arrears owing.

Approved applicants are required to sign a Loan Agreement to be registered on the title of the home. The cost of a legal representative and registration may be an eligible cost under the program.

Assistance is provided as a 10 year forgivable loan up to a maximum of $20,000 to assist with the cost of certain work required to the home.

If the homeowner remains in the home as their sole and principal residence for the 10 year forgivable loan period, and complies with all program requirements during the term, the loan is interest free and payment free and is completely forgiven after 10 years.

The full amount of the loan is repayable if false information was provided by the applicant and/or the funding is used for purposes other than the approved use. If the homeowner ceases to occupy the home as the sole and principal residence, 10% of the loan is forgiven each year and the pro-rated balance of the loan is repayable.

Mandatory repairs relating to health and safety and to extending the useful life of the property qualify. It is important to keep in mind that this assistance is for basic mandatory repairs and not repairs to modernize or improve the appearance on the home.

Eligible repairs for Ontario Renovates may include the following activities:

  • Repair / replacement required to remedy leaky roofs where deterioration is beyond practical repairs,
  • basement leaking
  • mould/asbestos removal to eliminate a present health hazard
  • fire safety items
  • electrical defects
  • repairs / replacement mandated by the local municipal Building Department;
  • replacement of a furnace (or the home’s primary heat source) that has been flagged as obsolete and/or at the end of its useful life and/or beyond practical repair and/or has been tagged prohibiting use.
  • Modifications to increase accessibility including:
    •  permanent installations of ramps,
    • handrails, chair and bath lifts,
    • height adjustments to countertops.
    • cues for doorbells/fire alarms.

Any work started prior to the registration of the Loan Agreement on title is not eligible for program funding.

Work must begin within 45 days of date the Loan Agreement is registered on title and be completed within 120 days of commencement.

Email: housing@hamilton.ca
Phone: 905-546-2424 ext. 2758

If you received previous Residential Rehabilitation Assistance Program (RRAP) funding within the last 15 years or Down payment Assistance Program through the City of Hamilton, you would NOT be eligible for Ontario Renovates.