Tax notices from City of Chilliwack have been arriving in mailboxes recently, making it the perfect time to review a big change to the homeowner grant application process.
New for 2021 is that homeowner grant applications must go through the Province of B.C. directly instead of through the City of Chilliwack.
So although residents still pay taxes through the City of Chilliwack, the homeowner grants are now a provincially administered program with the deadline of July 2.
In the past the grant applications were administered by city officials on behalf of the province, which could be applied for in person at city hall for those without internet connections, online or by phone.
But now under the aegis of the province, it’s strictly online, or by phone.
That is causing some delays. Stories of Chilliwack homeowners waiting several hours to get through to provincial officials on the phone are being reported.
The City of Chilliwack web page on the topic of Home Owner Grants (HOG) has this timely reminder:
“In order to avoid the first five per cent late payment penalty on the HOG portion of your taxes, you must submit your completed grant application by July 2, 2021, even if you are not making full payment at that time, or if your taxes are paid by instalment or by your mortgage company.
“To avoid the second five per cent late payment penalty on the HOG portion of your taxes, you must submit your completed Grant application by August 3, 2021.
The best time to apply is after receiving property tax notices in the mail, and before the due date.
• Wait to receive your property tax notice in the mail.
• Keep property tax notice on hand with info you’ll need to apply.
• Apply quickly online at gov.bc.ca/homeownergrant
If unable to apply online, call 1-888-355-2700 for assistance.
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