Low-income renters in Saskatchewan’s private housing market are newly eligible for the same subsidy introduced in April 2020 for tenants in not-for-profit accommodations. Through the jointly funded federal-provincial program, renters paying more than 50 per cent of their incomes on housing may receive a monthly benefit of $150 to $250 depending on the size of their households.
The Saskatchewan Housing Benefit is an initiative of Canada’s National Housing Strategy with a $6.8 billion program budget for 2020-21. With the recent expanded eligibility, qualifying recipients can retain the benefit if they move from non-profit to private accommodations or vice-versa. Housing costs are defined as rent and utilities.
“I encourage Saskatchewan people who are eligible to apply for the program so they can have an easier time making ends meet,” urges Lori Carr, Saskatchewan Minister of Social Services.
The allowable annual income ceiling is: $28,000 for singles or couples with no children; $35,000 for parents with one dependent; and $42,000 for parents with two or more dependents. Tenants will not qualify if they hold assets worth more than $100,000 and/or receive any other federal or provincial income or housing assistance, or are sponsored newcomers to Canada or fulltime post-secondary students.
“Many renters need long-term, predictable assistance to pay their rent and we are providing that through the Saskatchewan Housing Benefit,” says Ahmed Hussen, federal Minister of Families, Children and Social Development.