Affordable Housing Renovation Program

Last updated May 19, 2022

Do you own a building with six dwelling units or more? You could receive a subsidy if you want to renovate your building. Find out if you are eligible for this program!

Objectives

The Affordable Housing Renovation Program offers subsidies to owners of buildings containing six or more dwelling units to encourage them to renovate their buildings, mainly to:

  • Extend the usable life of the building
  • Improve tenants’ quality of life
  • And encourage ecological transition

Eligibility

Eligibility is determined in two steps. First you must submit an application to demonstrate that your building is affordable. Second, the city will inspect the building to see whether the condition of your building allows you to qualify for the program.

Step 1 - Find out if the application is eligible

Your application will be considered eligible:

  • If your building has at least one third of the dwelling units leased at affordable rents 
  • If at least half the units are occupied
  • If the building contains six dwelling units or more, and five storeys or fewer, and was built more than 20 years ago.

If these criteria are met, you can submit an application for the building. Important: File review fees apply as soon as an application is submitted.

Do you own a building with 1 to 5 dwellings? You may be eligible for the RénoPlex program.

Affordable housing units

One third of the dwelling units must be affordable. For example:

  • For a building with six dwelling units, at least two units must have affordable rents 
  • For a building with seven to nine dwelling units, at least three must have affordable rents

What is an affordable rent?

An affordable rent is one that is lower than or equal to the rent amount stated in the Additional information document (see below), according to the size of the unit.

Particular cases

Exceptions apply to cooperatives, housing non-profits and rooming houses.

The same eligibility requirements apply, but the building may have more than five storeys.

In addition, the building cannot be receiving ongoing operating financial support under a social housing program, aside from a rent supplement program.

For non-profits offering temporary housing for people who need support or protection, the only eligibility criterion is the condition of the building.

These buildings must include four or more rooms, no matter the number of storeys.

Requirements apply to the number of rooms instead of the number of dwelling units.

Step 2 - Determine whether the building qualifies for the subsidy

After reviewing your application, the city will contact you to inspect your building. The inspectors use a uniform procedure and allocate a score of 1 (excellent condition) to 6 (very poor condition) to your building.

Your building must have a score of 3 or 4 to qualify for the program. This means its condition is neither too good nor too bad.

Eligible work

After inspecting your building, the city will identify the components that qualify for the renovation subsidy:

  • Heating, ventilation, air conditioning (HVAC)
  • Interior construction 
  • Electricity
  • Envelope (including exterior cladding)
  • Interior finishes (floors, walls, ceilings)
  • Foundations and crawl space
  • Built-in and accessory furnishings (counters, cabinets, etc.)
  • Openings (doors, windows, etc.)
  • Plumbing
  • Projections (balconies, exterior staircases, etc.)
  • Structure
  • Roof

For example, if the city finds the roof, plumbing and exterior wall are eligible for the program, you can choose to renovate one or more of these components, or all of them, to obtain a subsidy.

Mandatory work

If your building has an oil-fired boiler, central furnace or water heater, you must replace it as part of your work. You must also replace the private portion of a water-service entry if it is made of lead.

Other eligible work

In addition to the work described above, you may also receive a subsidy for specific work intended to protect the building against sewer back-up or to improve the level of thermal insulation.

General conditions

To receive financial assistance, you must meet the following conditions:

  • You must hire a building professional (for example, an architect) to plan the work, prepare plans, and certify that work was done according to plans and specifications. You are responsible for obtaining any permit and authorization required from your borough prior to beginning the work 

  • The city subsidizes 50 per cent of fees related to professional services.

Financial assistance

Fees related to professional services 

The city subsidizes 50 per cent of fees related to professional services (architects, engineers, etc.).

Subsidy amount 

The subsidy will be equal to 30 to 45 per cent of the contractor’s invoice for the eligible work.

Subsidy of 40 per cent
  • Envelope
  • Foundations
  • Structure
  • Roof
Subsidy of 35 per cent
  • Heating
  • Air conditioning
  • Openings
  • Projections
  • Ventilation
  • Crawl space
Subsidy of 30 per cent
  • Creation of new storage area
  • Interior construction 
  • Accessory building demolition
  • Electricity
  • Interior finishes
  • Built-in and accessory furnishings
  • Plumbing
  • Sewer back-up protection
  • Paving replacement 
  • Fire protection system

Maximum subsidy

The maximum subsidy is:

  • $14,000 per dwelling for eligible work
  • $2,800 per dwelling for eligible fees
  • $500,000 per building for all eligible work and fees

Enhanced subsidy

If your rents are very affordable, you may qualify for an enhanced subsidy. The rents of one third of the units must be equal to or lower than those indicated in the “Rents providing access to enhanced financial support” table in the additional information document.

The enhanced percentage is 5 per cent higher than the regular percentage. For example, for structural work, the subsidy percentage increases from 40 to 45 per cent.

The maximum enhanced subsidy is:

  • $16,100 per dwelling for eligible work
  • $3,220 per dwelling for eligible work
  • $575,000 per building for all eligible work and fees

Examples of financial aid can be found in the Additional information document (see link at the bottom of this page).

Payment of the subsidy

The subsidy for each component can be paid as soon as renovation work on that component is completed, on condition that the appropriate expert confirms the completion in writing.

For example, if the contractor has finished renovating the roof, your architect can document that all roof-related work has been finished. You can then apply for the subsidy for the roof.

All mandatory work must be completed before you can request a payment related to non-mandatory work.

Commitments and obligations

Under this program, you cannot:

  • Transform the units into non-residential spaces, subdivide or enlarge them
  • Convert a dwelling into a divided or undivided co-ownership (condominium)
  • Illegally evict tenants
  • Cause the building to be vacant
  • Submit invoices or bids that do not show the real amounts paid
  • Submit leases that indicate rent amounts different from the real amounts asked

For three years following the last subsidy payment, the city may ask you to provide documentation that will let it check on these obligations and other program conditions.

If any one of the conditions is not met, the subsidy will have to be reimbursed, in whole or in part.

You must also agree to allow the city to contact the tenants affected by the work. They will be advised of the nature and cost of the renovations, the amount of the subsidy, the fact that the subsidy cannot be taken into account in any future rent increase, and the options available to them if there is a disagreement about the rent.

Work in occupied units

The program covers work on the exterior of dwelling units. If you must have work done within a dwelling, you must make every effort to allow tenants to remain in their units, and minimize the inconveniences to them.

For example, if you have to decontaminate for mould, you will have to rehouse tenants, or offer them compensation. In all cases, you must rehouse them in the dwelling once renovations are completed.

How to apply

To apply for the subsidy, you must:

  1. Fill out the on-line application form

  2. Fill out the necessary Supplementary forms (below)

  3. Submit, by regular mail, the payment by cheque of the review fees

If your application is eligible, we will send you a letter of confirmation.

Application review fees

You must pay review fees of $275 + $50 for each dwelling unit, up to a maximum of $1,773.

This amount is not refundable, even if the qualification inspection determines that your building is not eligible for the program.

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