The details about two programs aimed at helping with the affordability of housing were released by the provincial government. The PST rebate for new home construction and the Secondary Suite Incentive grant program were included in the throne speech.
The PST rebate for new home construction will provide a rebate of up to 42 percent of the PST paid on the purchase of a newly constructed home. The rebate was initially introduced in 2020 and ended on April 1st of this year. The re-introduction of the program will make it retroactive to April 1st.
The rebate applies to any contracts signed with builders or new housing starts that have been completed. The home, which must be a primary residence and not a rental property, must be occupied by April 1st, 2026. The rebate is only for new homes with a total price of less than $550,000 before taxes and excluding the value of the land. The percentage will also be reduced for homes with a total price between $450,000 and $550,000.
“In Canada and Saskatchewan, homeownership has historically been a key driver of wealth accumulation for many families," Regina & Region Home Builders’ Association President and CEO Stu Niebergall said. "One might go as far as saying, homeownership at best is a great investment and at worst is forced savings.”
The Secondary Suite Incentive grant program, when it is implemented, is said to provide up to 35 percent of the cost of building a new secondary suite at an owner’s primary residence. The intention of the program is to help to increase the rental supply available within Saskatchewan, while at the same time helping the homeowner with paying the mortgage.
"Saskatchewan is growing at its fastest pace in more than a century and we need housing stock across a wide range of communities and price ranges," Finance Minister Donna Harpauer said in the press release outlining the program. "A secondary suite can help homeowners with the cost of a mortgage while providing affordable options for renters."
The secondary suite program will only be available to those secondary suites built in single-family homes. The suite must include a separate entrance, full kitchen and full bathroom, and also meet all municipal, provincial and national bylaws, codes and standards for rental units.
"Secondary suites will add much-needed rental supply for the province and our association looks forward to supporting new rental housing providers that arise as a result of this incentive," Saskatchewan Landlord Association CEO Cameron Choquette said.
More details on the Secondary Suite Incentive grant are expected to be released in January of next year.