STEPS TAKEN TO REDUCE INSURANCE COSTS A POSITIVE MOVE FOR BC’S STRATA COMMUNITY

Condominium Home Owners’ Association of British Columbia

Leadership, Education and Resources for strata corporations in BC

Website: www.choa.bc.ca / Toll-free: 1.877.353.2462



Information Release

STEPS TAKEN TO REDUCE INSURANCE COSTS A POSITIVE MOVE FOR BC’S STRATA COMMUNITY

NEW WESTMINSTER –


BC’s strata community has been struggling with rising insurance premiums and astronomical deductibles for several months. The changes announced by the provincial government earlier today takes the steps needed to address this crisis. Ending referral fees paid to strata managers, requiring brokers to disclose the amount of their commissions, clarifying insurance terms and reporting plus limiting the ability for a strata corporation to use existing loopholes to avoid completing a depreciation report all work together to provide BC strata corporations with the ability to better manage their risk.

The Condominium Home Owners Association of BC (CHOA) applauds today’s announcement and supports this government’s move to table legislation amending the Strata Property Act and the Financial Institutions Act, specifically targeted at assisting BC’s strata community and acknowledging the insurance crisis faced by many BC strata corporations. Eliminating commissions to strata managers offers a greater level of transparency for strata corporations when renewing their insurance policy. Added to this are greater risk management measures, allowing for better long term planning in a strata corporation.

“The proposed elimination of commissions paid to parties providing strata management services is a critical step in addressing the high level of commissions and fees being incurred on policy renewals, many of which are undisclosed to the strata corporations.” said Tony Gioventu, CHOA Executive Director. “The proposed amendments that enable new regulations to address insurance risk and depreciation reports is a positive step towards managing risk, allowing strata corporations to focus on their long term planning in response to the dramatic increases in the insurance market” he added.

CHOA looks forward to working with the provincial government to put these much needed changes in place.

The Condominium Home Owners Association (CHOA) is a non-profit association that assists the entire strata industry throughout BC. CHOA promotes the interests of strata property owners by providing advisory services, education, resources, and support for its members and the strata community at large. For more information visit the CHOA website at: www.choa.bc.ca

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What is the Home Renovation Tax Credit (HRTC) & How Can I take Advantage of It?

March 13th, 2009

The Home Renovation Tax Credit (HRTC)

·         Implemented in the 2009 Federal Government Budget

·         Is a non-refundable tax credit for work performed or goods acquired in respect to an Eligible dwelling?

·         An Eligible Dwelling is one’s principal residence, a cottage or summer home occupied personally.

·         A property you own that family members reside in during the time period from January 27th, 2009 to February 1st, 2010. 

·         Eligibility is family based.  A family is an individual and his/her spouse/common law partner including children less than 18 years of age by the end of 2009.

·         If 2 or more families own and occupy the same residence, then both families will be eligible for their own separate tax credit.

·         Eligible expenses must fall between $1,000 and $10,000.  The maximum tax credit is $1,350 (15% of $9,000).

·         The Tax Credit is ONLY for the 2009 Taxation year. 

 

What Qualifies as an Eligible Expense?

 

·         Expenses incurred with respect to a renovation must be of an enduring nature and integral to the home.

·         This includes cost of labor, professional services, building materials, fixtures, rentals and permits.

·         You MUST have documentation to prove this.  Agreements, Contracts, Invoices, or Receipts.

·         The type and quantity of goods purchased or services received must be listed.

·         The Contractor’s name, business address, gst/hst registration number as well as the address where the work was performed must be on the Documentation. 

·         Proof of Payment must be noted as well.

 

Eligible Expenses:

 

·         Renovations to a Kitchen, Bathroom or Basement.  *(appliances are not eligible nor is renovations to a tenanted basement suite in your principal residence)*

·         New Carpets or Hardwood Flooring.

·         Building of an addition, garage, deck, shed or fence.

·         Painting of the exterior and interior of your homeRe-shingling of a roof.

·         A new furnace, woodstove, boiler or water heater.

·         A new driveway or the re-surfacing of an existing one. 

·         Laying of new sod.

·         Swimming pools both in ground and above.

·         Costs of permits, equipment rentals and incidental expenses related to the renovation.

·         *If you own a condo and a special levy is approved for the upgrading of a Common Area and a special assessment is passed for this levy, you would be eligible for a tax credit based on your unit entitlement.*  Please check with your Strata Management Company, Accountant and Lawyer for specifics. 

·         Expenses are not eligible if the work performed or the goods acquired are provided by a person not dealing at arm’s length. For example, if your brother-in-law helps you re-shingle your roof and is not registered with gst/hst and you pay him in cash or cheque, then you can’t claim the expenses.

·         Renovations that qualify for the Medical Expense Tax Credit (METC) is an eligible expense and one can claim both the (HRTC) & (METC).

·         Eligible expenses will not be reduced by other qualifying Government grants or Tax Credits.

 

Please note that the above information is just a guideline and for complete details or information, please contact the CRA Canada Revenue Agency, www.cra-arc.gc.ca or speak to your Accountant prior to renovating. 

 

If you or anyone you know are thinking about Selling and wish to renovate prior to doing so, please call me for a no obligation consultation of which renovations will increase the property’s value more than others. Also, should you hear of anyone thinking of buying or selling real estate, please keep me in mind as I am never too busy for any of your referrals!

 

Regards,

 

 

 

Robert Britch

www.robbritch.com

www.vancouverbcrealestate.ca

Email:  robbritch@telus.net

Tel:  604-240-5813

Quality Service since 1993!

                                                   

 

 

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