Secondary Suite Incentive

Couple unpacking their boxes in new home

The Secondary Suite Incentive Program (SSIP) will help homeowners create affordable housing in their communities. The program will provide money to help homeowners create a new secondary suite on their property to be rented out for below market value.

  • Homeowners who qualify will receive up to 50% of the cost of renovations, up to a maximum of $40,000.

The program will provide a rebate in the form of a forgivable loan—a loan that does not need to be repaid if the homeowner follows the terms of the program. For the loan to be forgiven, the new unit must be located on the same property where the homeowner lives and must be rented out at below market rates, set by BC Housing, for at least five years.

Learn more: Province of British Columbia’s Home Suite Home Guide.

Are you Eligible?

  • Is the home that you plan to build a suite in your primary home where you file taxes and register your vehicles?
  • Was the assessed value of your home in 2024 less than $2,150,000?
  • Are all registered home owners Canadian Citizens or permanent residents?
  • Was the combined income of all principal residents less than 209,420?
  • Is the home located within the approved list of municipalities?

follow this link to BC Housing’s checklist:

How to Apply

  1. Plan your project and prepare to apply
  • Check with your municipality to confirm if zoning allows for a secondary suite
  • Arrange for contractors and financing
  • Apply for a building permit as required (building permits issued on or after April 1, 2023 will be considered)
  1. Apply online using the SSIP portal

Apply for SSIP or manage application

  • Submit eligibility documents (proof of residence and income) and
  • Include your municipal building permit

Need SSIP portal help? View application resources for guides and videos

After you Apply

  • After approval, complete construction of your secondary suite
  • Once construction is complete
    • Submit the occupancy permit issued by your municipality
    • Provide proof of construction costs to receive the loan
  • Rent out suite and maintain program requirements

When program requirements are met, the loan will be forgiven

Applications will be approved on a first come, first served basis until annual funding is used up.

Frequently Asked Questions


Mortgage Application

Crunch the Numbers

The Spring market is here!  Many buyers have been patiently waiting things out–watching the interest rates, and housing prices.  For buyers who continue to question if now is the time, we’ve done it for you, crunch the numbers that is.

Any way you slice it, by comparing March 2023 statistics to those from October 2022, you’ll see favorable conditions that show it’s time to buy. These differences may help you assist your client in deciding if they want to buy a home now or stay sitting on the fence.

NOTE: For this comparison we are using average stats for single family dwellings, with the minimum down payment, insured interest rates, based on 25-year amortization.  This is for illustration purposes only and meant for discussion. 

Let Them See For Themselves


Crunch the numbers for them and let them see that the Spring market is a good time for them to make the move. Clients who buy a home now could have savings in monthly payments of approximately $620 vs buying 6 months ago.

Look back to October 2022

  • Average home price in Nanaimo: $811, 475 (VIREB)
  • 5-year fixed rates 5.44%* 
  • Minimum down payment required $55,150
  • Household income needed to qualify: $189,000
    • Payments $4702 monthly 

Fast forward to March of 2023:

  • Average home price in Nanaimo $763,134 (VIREB)
  • 5-year fixed rates are 4.48%* 
  • Minimum down payment is $51,315
  • Household income needed to qualify: $164,605
    • Payments $4089 monthly

The numbers don’t lie–clients who waited to buy a home now stand to benefit compared to October buyers. So, now is the time to buy.



Payments: Over 5 year term buyers would make $37,260 less in payments 

Purchase price: Buyers could have saved an average of  $38,341 on purchase price

Balance: Mortgage balance after 5 year term would be $41,900 less

Income required: Buyers could buy an average home with $21,500 less in annual household income

Down payment: Roughly $3800 less would be required to be put down

CMHC Premium: Buyers could have saved $1380 in default insurance premiums

Interest rate could be approximately 1.0% less


The monthly payments required to purchase a home, the down payment required and the household income needed–are all better than they were in October 2022.  If you have clients sitting on the fence, show them the breakdowns and they can consider if now is the time. As you can see, if you crunch the numbers using average home sale prices and compare the rates from October to now, they show a favourable market for a buyer.


Clients can fill out our Mortgage Application  we will crunch the numbers for them and help you get some more pre-approvals today!

October 2022 and March 2023 VIREB Stats