Social Housing Programs

The existing social housing stock is administered by CMHC, as well as Provinces and Territories, under the following programs:

Public Housing Program
Public housing projects approved between 1950 and 1985 are administered by provinces and territories and, in some cases, by municipalities. The projects are targeted to low-income households who pay rent based on their income.
 
Non-Profit Housing Program
This program provides assistance to public or private non-profit organizations who agreed to build or acquire rental housing for low- and moderate-income households. Various versions of this program were active until the early 1990s and featured preferred financing rates, forgivable capital contributions, interest rate write-downs and/or a full operating subsidy. This program was delivered to families and special needs households both on- and off-reserve.

Co-operative Housing Program
Co-operative housing provides modest, affordable housing to low- and moderate-income households. These projects are jointly owned by their members who co-operate to maintain lower housing charges by contributing to efficiencies through volunteer labour. Various versions of this program were active until the early 1990s and featured preferred financing rates, forgivable capital contributions, interest rate write-downs and/or a full operating subsidy. Where subsidies are available, co-operatives may reduce the housing charge of lower income members. Higher income members pay a market-based housing charge.

A Federal Co-operative Housing Program jointly developed by CMHC and the Co-operative Housing Federation of Canada was delivered in the late 1980s until 1991 and featured Index-Linked Mortgages (ILMs).

Urban Native Housing Program
This program provides assistance to Aboriginal non-profit organizations and Aboriginal co-op groups who own and operate rental housing projects in urban areas. The program requirements are generally the same as for the Non-Profit Housing Program. Most units committed under the Urban Native Housing Program are inhabited by Aboriginal clients.

Rent Supplement Program
This program helps households in need by setting a limit on the percentage of their incomes used to pay rent. Program subsidies make up the difference between the rent-geared-to-income payment and the recognized cost of the rental accommodation.

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