Can I use the RRSP Home Buyer's Plan if my wife already owns a house?

Gena Katz, a chartered accountant and principal with Ernst and Young, has the answer.

Gena Katz 30 January, 2003 | 2:00PM

Dear Expert:

I just got married and my wife already owns a house. Am I still eligible to withdraw $20,000 under the RRSP Home Buyer's Plan to buy a home, even though my wife already owns a property?

Expert Opinion:

In order to be eligible for an RRSP withdrawal under the Home Buyer's plan, an individual must not have owned and occupied a home within the five calendar years before the time of withdrawal. In addition, the individual must not have lived in a home owned by his/her spouse/common-law partner within that period (and while married or common-law). So assuming you have not lived in your wife's home during the time of your marriage and you have not owned a home (and lived in it as a principal place of residence) at any time within the five-year calendar period previously specified, you can still make the $20,000 RRSP withdrawal for the purchase of a home.

To find out how much an RRSP contribution may save you, try Morningstar's RRSP Calculator

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Gena Katz

Gena Katz