Benefits of FHSAs

Last updated: October 10, 2023

What are the benefits of an FHSA?

The Tax-Free First Home Savings Accounts (FHSA) allows you to set money aside in eligible investments to grow savings for your first qualifying home tax-free (up to certain limits).

It combines many of the benefits offered in a TFSA and an RRSP together.

Here are 6 benefits to consider if you’re thinking of saving in an FHSA.

1. Pay less tax with tax-deductible contributions to buy a qualifying home

Like RRSP contributions, eligible contributions to your FHSA reduce your taxable income for the year of the contribution or a future year.

There is a limit to how much you can contribute into your FHSA annually, and there is a lifetime contribution limit.
Learn more about FHSA contributions

Note on FHSA contribution deadlines: Unlike RRSP contributions, any FHSA contribution you make during the first 60 days of the current year cannot be deducted from your income for the previous year.
Learn more about the difference between FHSAs vs RRSPs

2. Any money you earn is tax-free

Just like a TFSA, any money you earn in your FHSA is tax-free (provided you use the money to buy a qualifying home).

Also, your FHSA can be used to hold, buy and sell the same types of investments as those allowed in a TFSA like cash, mutual funds, securities listed on a designated stock exchange, guaranteed investment certificates, and more.

3. You don’t need to pay anything back

Unlike the Home Buyers’ Plan (HBP), you don’t need to pay anything back if you use all the savings from your FHSA to buy a qualifying home.

4. It can be used with your spouse’s FHSA to help pay for your home

Since each FHSA is an individual account, your spouse or common-law partner can also open and contribute to their own FHSA. Both accounts can be used to help with your down payment, so long as you’re both first-time homebuyers.

5. You can use the FHSA and HBP together to buy a home

You might have already started saving some money in your RRSP, intending to use the HBP to buy your first home. You can use both an FHSA and the HBP to buy the same qualifying home.

Learn more about the difference between FHSAs vs HBPs

6. Your contributions aren’t limited to a down payment

If you decide to use the money in your FHSA for something other than buying a home, you can transfer the money to an RRSP or RRIF without any immediate tax consequences, as long as it is a direct transfer , and other conditions are met.

Connect with an advisor for more detailed information. You may also want to talk to your tax specialist about any tax implications.

An advisor can address any questions or concerns you may have.

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