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New Tax Break for Seniors

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A new tax deferral program has been created to help Saskatchewan seniors.

The Seniors Education Property Tax Deferral Program, which opened on April 10, will give Saskatchewan seniors with household incomes under $70,000 the option to defer the education portion of the property taxes on their home through a repayable loan.

“This program will provide low-to-moderate-income seniors with greater financial flexibility, and help them stay in their homes longer,” Social Services Minister and Minister Responsible for Saskatchewan Housing Corporation Paul Merriman said. “We are following through on an election promise and supporting our government’s priorities and strategies, including The Poverty Reduction Strategy.”

Seniors are eligible for the program if they:
•are 65 years of age or older;
•own and live in their home as their main residence in Saskatchewan;
•have total household income below $70,000; and
•maintain a minimum of 25 per cent equity in their home.

Seniors can apply at any point in the year to defer their education property taxes. Approved applicants will be enrolled in the program for 10 years with the option to opt out at any point. At the end of the 10-year enrollment period, seniors who would like to continue to defer future education property taxes can reapply to the program. Seniors remain responsible for the direct and full payment of their property taxes.

Repayment of the loans must occur when the program clients sell, transfer, or no longer reside in their homes or when they no longer meet the conditions of the loan. Clients may also repay the loan at any time without penalty.

This program is only available for the education property taxes that are charged for a principal residence. If the senior has a secondary residence, farmland, or commercial property in addition to the principal residence, they may only defer the portion of education property taxes for the principal residence. Only the education property taxes for the current calendar year may be deferred.

People interested in the program can call 306-787-4177 or 1-800-667-7567 or email repairstaff@gov.sk.ca. For more information, visit www.saskatchewan.ca/residents/taxes-and-investments/property-taxes/seniors-education-property-tax-deferral-program.

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