The $400 BC renter’s tax credit is new for the 2023 tax year

By Vickie Smith, Tax AID Program, Active Support Against Poverty Society 

For the 2023 tax year, renters in British Columbia can claim a new tax credit of up to $400. 

Here’s what you need to know about the credit and how to claim it. 

This is a refundable credit: meaning if you do not have an amount owing to CRA, and you meet all the criteria, the $400 credit should be received as a refund. If you have an outstanding balance with CRA, this credit will be applied to decrease the amount you owe.  

To qualify, you must be either: 

  • at least 19 years of age  
  • OR in a common-law relationship or married  
  • OR a parent of a child. 

You must also:

  • have rented and occupied a unit in BC for at least 6 months of the calendar year you are filing AND 
  • been a resident of BC on December 31 of that year* 

*A calendar year is January 1 to December 31 of the filing year. The 6 months do not have to be consecutive. 

Where there are partners, either common-law or married, only one member of the household may apply. If you were incarcerated for more than 6 months of the filing year you are not eligible. Rent paid to a relative, a campsite, a boat moorage, mobile home pad rentals or to a rent-to-own agreement are not considered valid for this credit.  

This credit is income tested: meaning the amount you are eligible to receive is based on the amount of adjusted family income you earned. Adjusted family income means the total income you and your spouse or common law partner have earned minus any government credits to which you are entitled.   

Those filing as single; common-law; married; or single with dependent/s having an adjusted family income of less than $60,000 will be eligible to receive the full $400.00 credit. Those with income between $60,000 and $80,000 can still receive a partial amount, with a reduction rate of 2% of the amount you make over $60,000.  

Every year, the income threshold will change to account for inflation.  

To claim this credit at the time of filing you must provide the following information for each location you are claiming:   

  • an address 
  • total of rent paid 
  • total of months rented 
  • the name or the landlord or organization. 

If you moved in the same year, be sure to include both landlords’ names, and how much rent you paid in each address.  

This information must be recorded on your tax refund at time of filing and any receipts or agreements should be kept as back up in case CRA has follow up questions. 

Vickie Smith is a tax advocate for the Tax AID program at Active Support Against Poverty Society. 

The Tax AID Partnership can help file your taxes. Find local support near you: 

METRO VANCOUVER AND FRASER VALLEY (and all of BC)
Disability Alliance BC
1450-605 Robson Street, Vancouver, BC, V6B 5J3
Tel: 236-477-1717 Toll Free 1-877-940-7797
taxaid@disabilityalliancebc.org  

BC INTERIOR
Ki-Low-Na Friendship Society
442 Leon Ave, Kelowna, BC V1Y 6J3
Tel: 250-763-4905
taxdisability@kfs.bc.ca  

VANCOUVER ISLAND
Together Against Poverty Society
828 View Street, Victoria, BC, V8W 1K2
Tel: 250-361-3521
tax@tapsbc.ca  

NORTHERN BC
Active Support Against Poverty Society
1188 6 Ave, Prince George, BC V2L 3M6
Tel: 250-563-6112 Toll-free: 1-877-563-6112
taxaid@asaphs.com 

The Canada Workers Benefit

The Canada Workers Benefit (CWB) is a refundable tax credit created by the CRA to help individuals and families that work and earn a low income. The CWB can be claimed each year on your tax return, as long as you are eligible. The CWB has a basic amount and a disability supplement. 

What makes someone eligible? 

To be eligible for the CWB basic amount, you have to meet the following criteria: 

  • Earn working income 
  • Have your net income be below $33,015 
  • Be a resident of Canada throughout the year 
  • Be at least 19 years old on December 31st of the eligible tax year, or live with your spouse/common-law partner or your child 

It is important to note that you will not be eligible for the CWB if you or your eligible spouse/common-law partner: 

  • Are enrolled as a full-time student for more than 13 weeks of the year, unless you have an eligible dependent 
  • Have been confined to a prison for at least 90 days of the year 
  • Do not have to pay tax in Canada due to a position as an officer or servant of another country 

What about the Disability Supplement? 

The Disability Supplement has the same eligibility criteria; however, you also have to be approved for the Disability Tax Credit (DTC). The DTC is a non-refundable tax credit that helps reduce taxes owing for people with disabilities and their caregivers, and is also a gateway to federal tax and financial programs. You can learn more about the DTC here.  

So, how much can I get? 

The maximum basic amount for the CWB is $1,428 for single individuals. 

This amount is gradually reduced if your adjusted net income is more than $23,495. Note that your net income is your income after all deductions are made on your tax return. You will not get the basic amount if your adjusted net income is more than $33,015. 

For families, the maximum basic amount is $2,461. 

Like the amount for single individuals, the amount is gradually reduced if your adjusted family net income is more than $26,805, and you will not receive the basic amount if your adjusted net family income is more than $43,212. 

As for the Disability Supplement, the maximum amount is $737 for single individuals and families. 

For single individuals, the Disability Supplement is gradually reduced if your adjusted net income is more than $33,018 and you will not receive it if your adjusted net income is more than $37,932. 

For families, the Disability Supplement is gradually reduced if your adjusted family net income is more than $43,210. In cases where one spouse is eligible for the Disability Tax Credit, you will not get the Disability Supplement if your adjusted family net income is more than $48,124. If both spouses are eligible for the Disability Tax Credit, you will not get the Disability Supplement if your adjusted family net income is more than $53,037. 

It’s important to note that while only one person per household can receive the CWB, if you and your spouse are eligible for the DTC and the Disability Supplement, both of you can receive those amounts. 

How will I get my CWB payments? 

After claiming the CWB on your tax return, you will get up to 50% of your CWB in the form of advance quarterly payments through what the CRA calls the Advanced Canada Workers Benefit (ACWB). While in previous years you had to apply for advance payments separately, as of 2023, no application is required. Advanced payments will be automatically sent to you. 

Another great benefit of the CWB is that the Disability Supplement is retroactive and included in tax calculations when the DTC is applied to your tax returns. This means that if you have been receiving the CWB for a number of years and have recently been approved for the DTC for any years before you applied, you can also receive the Disability Supplement for any year you were deemed DTC eligible while receiving the CWB.  

I think I’m eligible but haven’t gotten it! What should I do? 

If you think you’re eligible for the CWB and need help filing your taxes, we are here to help. Our Tax AID Program helps people with disabilities with filing their taxes and other tax-related matters. We can help you get up to date on your returns and our advocates can have a one-on-one consultation with you to see if you are eligible and help you secure the CWB.  

For more information and to book an appointment, visit our Contact Us page. 

*We have created an infographic to accompany this post. Download it here:

Ask An Expert: The Disability Tax Credit

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The Disability Tax Credit (DTC) can seem daunting but we’re here to help!

On October 23rd from 10-11 am, join us for a live virtual Q&A with a panel of experts, and ask us anything about the DTC and other tax related benefits.

Register here: https://t.ly/laOJw