Agencies want to improve home financing for First Nations

Thursday, November 28th, 2019

CMHC and LAB changing policy for First Nations

Steve Randall

First Nation families are expected to benefit from two policy changes announced by CMHC and the Lands Advisory Board (LAB) this week.

The enhancements are aimed at making it easier to access home financing for First Nation or Indigenous Settled land.

They include CMHC mortgage loan insurance for home financing secured through the LAB-led A to A leasing, and the agency will also establish lower down payment requirements for insured home financing on-reserve.

“The Lands Advisory Board supports initiatives of CMHC which will make it easier for First Nation governments to support their members in improving housing on reserve lands,” said Robert Louie, Chairman of the Lands Advisory Board. “A to A leasing is an innovation first developed in my community, Westbank First Nation, and it is good to see that CMHC recognizes the potential benefit of this option for other First Nations and is now able to provide mortgage loan insurance for A to A leasing.”

CMHC says that together, these adjustments will mean easier access to homeownership without the traditional requirement of a Ministerial Loan Guarantee and provide greater access to the First-Time Homebuyer Incentive.

“These policy enhancements will provide First Nations borrowers more access to insured financing for homeownership, including through the new First Time Home Buyer Incentive,” said Romy Bowers, CMHC’s Senior Vice-President of Client Solutions. “We commend the Lands Advisory Board for championing innovative housing solutions for First Nations, such as the A to A leasing concept.”

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