If you or your spouse bought your first home in 2018, you might qualify for the First-Time Home Buyers’ Tax Credit (HBTC). This tax credit is available to first-time home buyers, who purchased a qualifying home in 2018, such as:
- Single-family houses
- Semi-detached houses
- Mobile homes
- Condominium units and
- Apartments in duplexes, triplexes, fourplexes, or apartment buildings
Note: This credit is only claimable in the year you bought your home. If you forget to claim it, you’ll need to adjust your return for the tax year in which you bought your home. You can do so with H&R Block’s ReFile feature or ask the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) to adjust your return.
You can claim this amount if you meet the following requirements:
- The qualifying home is registered in your name (and/or in your spouse’s name, if applicable)
- The home is in Canada
- You did not live in another home owned by you or your spouse in the year of purchase or in the previous four years
- You moved into the home no later than one year after you purchased it as your principal residence
Tax Tip: If you or your spouse qualify for the disability amount, you can claim the first time home buyer’s tax credit even if you aren’t a first-time buyer, provided the home you’re moving into is better suited to meet the needs of the person with the disability. The person with the disability must live in the home as their principal residence no later than one year after it is purchased.
How much can I claim?
You can claim a 15% tax credit on the amount of $5,000, which you put towards the down-payment of your first home. This results in a tax credit of $750 (calculated by multiplying $5,000 by the 15% tax rate). You and your spouse or common-law partner (if applicable) can both claim a portion of the tax credit, as long as the combined amount isn’t more than the maximum claimable.
Note: This amount can only be claimed in the year you bought your home – it cannot be carried forward to be claimed in a future year.
Example: John and Katie purchased and took possession of a qualifying home in 2018. They both want to claim an equal amount of the First-Time Home Buyers’ Tax Credit on their return. The maximum amount either of them can enter into the designated field of their returns would be $2,500. H&R Block will automatically calculate the resulting tax credit as follows:
$2,500 x 15% = $375
Total credit = $750
$2,500 x 15% = $375
Where do I claim this?
Follow these steps in H&R Block's 2018 tax software:
- Under the PREPARE tab, click the REQUIRED icon.
- Navigate to the Special situations page. You’ll find yourself here:
- Enter the credit amount you want to claim in the field labelled, If you purchased a home in 2018 that qualifies for the home buyers’ amount, enter how much of the $5,000 credit you’d like to claim.