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The federal government has discontinued the First-Time Home Buyer Incentive, a much-criticized program aimed at improving housing affordability for new buyers that saw muted uptake in major markets.

Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), the national housing agency, said in a statement on its website that the program was winding up, with no new or updated submissions to be accepted after midnight ET on March 21.

Applications resubmitted after that date will be subject to a manual review, with review requests to be submitted no later than midnight ET on March 25 and no new approvals to be granted after March 31.

Introduced in 2019, the Incentive was aimed at reducing monthly mortgage payments for qualified first-time buyers through a shared-equity scheme. It offered a contribution of 5% or 10% towards the purchase of a newly constructed home, and 5% of the purchase of a resale existing home or new/resale mobile or manufactured home.

Still, that shared-equity component, which meant the government would also benefit from the potential future sale of a home, proved unpopular with buyers, who would have to repay the Incentive either after 25 years or upon sale.

The program faced challenges from the off. In 2020, federal Conservative MPs Tom Kmiec and Stphanie Kusie slammed its cost and low levels of consumer interest, urging CMHC to topdeo the scheme,  after an annual report showed its uptake lagged far below projections.

Mortgage Professionals Canada (MPC) also criticized the Incentive at its 2022 summit, when vice chair Veronica Love said the scheme was “simply failing” with data showing participation in the program was less than a third of what the government had originally envisaged.

Between its launch in September 2019 and the end of March 2021, the program had seen  LESS THAN 10,000 sucessfull applicants across Canada with Edmonton and Calgary accounting for nearly 2,000 of that total.

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Category: First Time Home Buyers (15 posts)

  • May 27, 2020 @ 9:06 PM
  • Posted by John C Filice

Is it a Good Time to Become a First-Time Home Buyer?

We are facing a challenging time as we work together to combat COVID-19 in our country and even our own neighborhoods. With so much uncertainty in the air, is it a good time to think about buying a ho

  • May 13, 2020 @ 5:14 PM
  • Posted by John C Filice

5 First-Time Homebuyer Mistakes To Avoid

Buying your first home is a scary and exciting process because it’s a HUGE commitment. It’s easy to get swept up in the excitement of home shopping and mistakes can leave you with buyer&rs

  • February 12, 2020 @ 5:50 PM
  • Posted by John C Filice

Real Estate 101: Essential Tips for First-Time Home Buyers

Buying a home is always a big decision, but when you're a first-time buyer it's even more important to get it right. Without home-buying experience to draw on, it's easy to make mistakes you could reg

  • January 29, 2020 @ 5:28 PM
  • Posted by John C Filice

10 Essential Tips for Taking Out Your First Mortgage

Taking out your first mortgage presents a major financial commitment, possibly the biggest one you'll ever make, so it's crucial that you get the best deal available. Getting a mortgage is often not a

  • June 27, 2019 @ 12:11 PM
  • Posted by John C Filice

First Time Home Buyers Guide: What Happens after Sending an Offer to Purchase

After sending the offer to purchase to the seller, there's nothing left to do but cross some fingers and hope for the best. Or is there? What happens now and when will the keys finally change hands? T

  • June 12, 2019 @ 10:35 AM
  • Posted by John C Filice

First Time Home Buyers Guide: What about Pre-Qualification, Pre-Approval, and Mortgage Commitment Letters?

Securing pre-qualification, pre-approval, and mortgage commitment letters can simplify the mortgage application process. These steps can also help home buyers avoid disaster. They don't need all three

  • May 22, 2019 @ 11:07 AM
  • Posted by John C Filice

Three Mistakes to Avoid as a First Time Homebuyer

Purchasing your first home is always an exciting life milestone. However, if you want to make a smooth and easy transition into home ownership, there are a few mistakes you should try to avoid along

  • May 8, 2019 @ 12:18 PM
  • Posted by John C Filice

Mortgage Mistakes - How to Avoid Getting in Over Your Head When Buying Your First Home

If you are tired of renting and ready to buy the home of your dreams, you need to plan carefully. The dream of home ownership is a wonderful thing, but without careful planning and a proactive approac

  • April 10, 2019 @ 11:56 AM
  • Posted by John C Filice

Mortgage Questions for First-Time Buyers

While purchasing a home qualifies as the largest acquisition in many peoples' lives, it doesn't have to invoke anxiety. As long as you know what to expect, you'll be set to become a successful homeo

  • January 23, 2019 @ 12:18 PM
  • Posted by John C Filice

5 Mistakes to Avoid When Buying Your First House

Buying a first home is a big step, both financially and personally. In the long run, home ownership can lead to many other investment and and financial opportunities. Of course, owning a home also g

  • December 12, 2018 @ 3:01 PM
  • Posted by John C Filice

Buying Your First Home: When Are You REALLY Ready?

Purchasing your first home is the dream of a lifetime and a massive investment toward your future. The process is full of hopes and aspirations but is also a huge commitment to take on. For those who

  • October 10, 2018 @ 2:07 PM
  • Posted by John C Filice

Five Surefire Ways to Ensure You are ready to Buy a Home as a Recent College Graduate

If you are a recent college graduate, you might think that buying a home is still many years off, but that's not necessarily the case. If you dream of homeownership, even as a young adult, there may b

  • November 23, 2016 @ 1:37 PM
  • Posted by John C Filice

4 Homebuyer Tips To Make House Hunting More Efficient

Going house hunting can be fun and exciting at first, but the more houses you look at, the more frustrating you might become -- especially if you just can't seem to find the perfect home. No one

  • November 9, 2016 @ 1:37 PM
  • Posted by John C Filice

5 Things That May Not Be Included In Your Home Purchase

When you find the house you love and want to purchase, if there is something you want included in the purchase, tell your agent. Be prepared to pay an additional amount for anything the seller did not

  • October 19, 2016 @ 1:37 PM
  • Posted by John C Filice

First Time Buyer Plan

Navigating the world of Canadian home buying.   Step 1: Figure out how much you can afford. Falling in love with a house you can’t afford can be heartbreaking. Avoid disappointment by