Métis Nation B.C. announces $1.5-million home improvement pilot program for seniors
Posted by Métis Nation BC on
Ma Nîķi (My Home) pilot program to play key role in helping Métis seniors age in place
Surrey, BC (June 29, 2020) –Métis seniors in B.C. looking to make important renovations to their homes will now have access to $1.5 million in home improvement funding through the Ma Nîķi (My Home) Métis Seniors Home Repair Program announced today by the Métis Nation of B.C. (MNBC). Métis citizens are able to apply for the Ma Nîķi program through the new MNBC website which will be launched on Monday, July 6th.
The intent of the pilot program is to assist Métis citizens who are seniors (age 65 and older) with up to $20,000 per applicant to improve the condition of their owned home. The funding would cover at least 75 applicants per year in the form of a non-repayable grant, as long as the home is owned for at least five years from receipt of the grant.
Funding for the Ma Nîķi program is being allocated from the Métis Nation B.C. Housing Fund available for the fiscal year 2020/21 and was provided by Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada. The Ma Nîķi program is one of several housing initiatives established by MNBC to improve access to affordable housing and living conditions of Métis citizens.
“Ensuring that Métis people have access to affordable housing and can ‘age in place’ are key components of our Made for Métis Housing Strategy,” said Clara Morin Dal Col, President and Minister of Housing. “For many seniors, being able to make the key home improvements they need can make all the difference between being able to keep living in the place they’ve called home for many years or having to relocate to a seniors’ home, often times outside their home community. MNBC represents one-third of the Indigenous people in B.C. and is committed to ensuring the Métis seniors who helped build this province can enjoy their retirement in their own homes.”
Other Métis housing initiatives include the Métis Single Parents Helping Hand Program (MSPHHP) and the Métis Community Housing Program (MCHP). A new Senior Manager of Housing and Homelessness as well as a Housing Programs Coordinator are currently being recruited to assist in the operation of MNBC’s Made for Métis Housing Strategy.
Among some of the eligibility requirements for the Ma Nîķi program are that applicants must be residents of B.C., must be 65 years or older, and must have been registered citizens of MNBC for at least one year. They must also be fee simple owners and the loan must be for improvements on their principal residence. To qualify for the loans, an applicant’s gross income must be $36,000 per year or less for a single senior or $56,000 per year or less for a senior couple. For additional eligibility requirements, see backgrounder below.
Ma Nîķi - Métis Seniors Home Repair Pilot Program - BACKGROUNDER
- Funding would cover at least 75 applicants
- Maximum funding per applicant: $20,000
- Funding format: A non-repayable grant, unless the home was sold within five (5) years from the date of approval. In that case, the grant would be 100% repayable to MNBC.
Eligibility – general
- 65 years and older (In the case of married couples – only one spouse needs to be 65 or older)
- Citizen of MNBC and resident of British Columbia for at least one year
Eligibility – Property ownership
- For the applicant’s principal residence
- Fee simple owner
- Mobile or manufactured homeowner on non-owned land
Eligibility – Income
- Single senior with total gross income of $36,000 per year or less
- Senior couple with a total gross income of $56,000 per year or less
Eligibility – Repairs and Improvements
Payment schedule to successful applicants
- 25% upon signing of contract with contractor
- 50% upon start of work
- 25% upon completion and final inspection
How to apply
- Applicant to fill out form and provide copy of Citizenship card showing they meet age criteria
- Applicant to provide written evidence that they own the home or mobile home (tax receipt, assessment notice or title search)
- Applicant to provide written scope of work of proposed upgrades
- Applicant to provide written quote from a qualified contractor who will carry out the work
- MNBC will review application and provide written approval (if criteria met) to proceed with the work
- During this pilot program applications will be reviewed and approved on a ‘first-in’ basis.