Released December 16, 2011

Program Enables Avalon and Burin Homeowners to Renovate Their Homes

A total of 812 homeowners with low incomes throughout the Avalon and Burin Peninsulas renovated and repaired their homes this past year under a $3.5 million investment in the Provincial Home Repair Program (PHRP). The Honourable Peter Penashue, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, on behalf of the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development and Minister Responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), and the Honourable Tom Hedderson, Minister Responsible for Newfoundland and Labrador Housing Corporation, made the announcement today.

“The Government of Canada is proud to have contributed to these investments,” said Minister Penashue. “More than 800 homes have been renovated, providing updated quality housing for families while contributing to the economic and social well-being of Newfoundland and Labrador’s communities.”

“The Provincial Home Repair Program continues to meet its mandate for providing a cost-effective means for homeowners with low incomes to make essential repairs,” said Minister Hedderson. “Seniors in particular have benefitted from the program, as it helps them undertake renovations and repairs which may allow them the option of staying in their own homes.”

The types of repairs that can be undertaken with a PHRP loan or grant include upgrades to heating, electrical or plumbing systems, and renovations and retrofits to structures, foundations, windows, doors, roofing or siding. Applications are assessed in the order in which they are received and priority is given to emergency repairs. Applicants must be homeowners with annual incomes of $32,500 or less. The PHRP has provided more than $200 million to assist approximately 50,000 low-income households throughout the province since it began 36 years ago.

In September 2008, the Government of Canada committed to a five-year investment of more than $1.9 billion in housing and homelessness to address the needs of low-income Canadians, those at risk of homelessness, and the homeless. This included a two-year renewal of the Affordable Housing Initiative and renovation programs until March 31, 2011 with a commitment to consult on the use of the investments for the 2011-2014 period.

On August 16, 2011, the Governments of Canada and Newfoundland and Labrador signed a new $41 million equally cost-shared Agreement for Investment in Affordable Housing 2011-2014. Following the signing of this agreement, the Provincial Government through NLHC extended PHRP for another three years.

The Provincial Government is investing an additional $12 million in PHRP over the next three years, for a total provincial investment of $24 million. This increases the total PHRP budget for program years 2011-2014 to $36 million. This investment directly supports the goals of the Social Housing Plan for Newfoundland and Labrador - Secure Foundations, released by the Provincial Government in August 2009, outlining a long-term vision for social housing. It is aimed at improving the housing circumstances of low-income households and helping create healthier communities.

The PHRP serves an average 2,500 households annually, mostly in rural communities throughout the province. A maximum grant of $5,000 is available to homeowners on the island while in Labrador a maximum grant of $6,500 is available. Homeowners whose repairs exceed these levels may apply for a low-interest repayable loan of up to $10,000 ($13,000 in Labrador).

To find out more about how the Government of Canada and CMHC are working to build stronger homes and communities for all Canadians, call CMHC at 1-800-668-2642 or visit Opens in new window

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Media contacts:

Jason Card
Director of Communications
Department of Transportation and Works
709-729-3015, 699-0470
Jenny Bowring
Communications Manager
Newfoundland Labrador Housing
Alyson Queen
Press Secretary
Office of Minister Finley
Katherine LeBlanc
Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation