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Home accessibility tax credit (HATC)

This tax credit is for renovations or alterations to make your dwelling more accessible and to allow you to be more mobile or more functional.

Are you eligible to claim the disability tax credit or are aged 65 or older? Then this tax credit is available to you.

Do you remember the home renovation tax credit in 2009? Well this tax credit is similar but with restrictions.

To qualify the renovation must allow the qualifying individual to gain access to, or to be mobile or functional within the dwelling, or reduce the risk of harm to the qualifying individual within the dwelling or in gaining access to the dwelling.

Items such as ramps, and grab bars installed permanently to allow easier access are eligible. A walk-in bathtub to prevent falls or a stair lift are some examples. It must be of an enduring nature and become a part of the dwelling. Appliances and financing costs do not qualify.

If you do the work yourself you cannot claim the labour but you can claim the materials.

If the work is completed by a family member the labour cost can only be claimed if they are GST registered.

Documentation is essential so get the invoice and proof that is was paid. The invoice must identify the vendor or contractor with GST number if applicable, a description of what was done and where and when.

The claim is made on you 2016 or later tax return. The maximum tax credit is $1500 which is 15% times an expenditure of $10,000.

If the expense qualifies a medical expense claim can be made as well as the HATC. That means you get two credits for the same expense. It gets even better if you get a grant or forgivable loan from the federal or provincial government. You can also get a small rebate or 10% cash back from the vendor and that does not affect your tax credit.

Ask your tax professional for more detailed questions.

Tax laws change so check if it still applies in a later year.

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