B.C. Seniors’ advocate Isobel Mackenzie is urging seniors in the province to check for 2016 budget assistance in a couple of ways: First, reminding them that despite another New Year increase in Medical Services Premiums, many seniors are eligible for a subsidy.
The program in question helps seniors with annual household incomes below $30,000, but they have to file their taxes, and then apply for the assistance.
Meantime, given the province-wide anxiety this year over skyrocketing property assessments, the seniors’ advocate has also issued another reminder.
In this case she notes, homeowners over the age of 55 could be eligible for the property tax deferral program, although the major beneficiaries are those, who can afford the most expensive homes.
She also welcomes the government announcement this week to increase the threshold for the homeowners grant, but claims it should be based on income, and not just property value.
B.C. residents who own homes up to $1.2 million dollars may be eligible to receive a full home owner grant, which can reduce residential property taxes on a principal residence by up to $570.
There are also additional grants for homeowners 65 or over, who qualify under the persons with disabilities category or receive certain war-veteran allowances.