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First Home Savings Account (FHSA)

Achieve your home ownership dream

Our First Home Savings Account now features a special rate of 5.75%* on Investment Savings balances until April 1, 2024.

Introduced in 2023 by the federal government, this account is a tax-advantaged opportunity designed to help first-time home buyers save up to $40,000 for a down payment. An FHSA can also be used in combination with the Home Buyers' Plan (HBP).

You have options when investing in an FHSA

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FHSA Investment Savings Account

A competitive high-interest savings account with convenient access in-branch or online.

View our FHSA Investment Savings Rate

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FHSA Guaranteed Investment Certificates

A full range of short to long-term GICs are FHSA-eligible.

View GIC Options

Save up to $40,000 for a down payment towards your first home

Tax-free in and out

Make tax-deductible contributions and tax-free withdrawals towards a qualifying purchase.

FHSA and HBP

Save up to $75,000 towards your first home by combining the FHSA with the Home Buyers' Plan (HBP) for the same qualifying home.

Future flexibility

Carry forward unused contribution room, plus transfer unused deposits tax-free to your RRSP or RRIF.

FHSA Frequently Asked Questions

Eligibility

You are eligible to open a FHSA if you:

  • are a first-time home buyer†
  • are a resident of Canada
  • are between the ages of 18 and 71, and
  • have a valid SIN

†Have not lived in a home that was owned by you or your spouse/common-law partner in the calendar year in which you are opening the FHSA or at any time in the preceding four (4) calendar years.

You don’t have to choose one or the other and can even use both. If your situation allows, you can withdraw up to $35,000 from your RRSP under the Home Buyers' Plan (HBP) and make a qualifying withdrawal of up to $40,000 from your FHSA for the same qualifying home, as long as you meet all of the conditions at the time of each withdrawal.

Alternatively, if you’ve accumulated RRSP savings with the intent of using the Home Buyers’ Plan in the future but prefer the features of the new FHSA, you can transfer available RRSP funds over to the FHSA, tax-free (within the FHSA qualifying conditions including annual and maximum contribution limits).

No, you will be able to use both your FHSA as well as make a withdrawal from your Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) under the Home Buyers' Plan (HBP) to purchase a qualifying home. Keep in mind that with the HBP, you’ll have to repay any funds withdrawn from your RRSP.

Investing with an FHSA

Members can choose from our FHSA Investment Savings Account and a full selection of GICs.

It is possible to hold more than one FHSA, but the total contribution amount of all FHSAs cannot exceed the annual and lifetime limits. It’s important to keep careful track of your FHSA contributions to avoid overcontributing. Any overcontributions will result in a penalty tax on the over-contributed amount at a rate of 1% per month for each month the overcontribution remains in the FHSA.

The funds in your FHSA have to be used by December 31 of the 15th year after opening the account, or by December 31 of the year you turn 71, whichever comes earlier. If you have not used the funds in your FHSA by that time, you can transfer the funds from your FHSA on a tax-free basis to your RRSP without impacting your RRSP contribution room, or to your Registered Retirement Income Fund (RRIF). Otherwise, you can withdraw funds from your FHSA, but your withdrawal will be taxed at your applicable tax rate.

Contributions and withdrawals

Starting in 2023, qualifying individuals can contribute $8,000 per year (by December 31st) to their FHSA. Unused contributions, up to $8,000, can be carried forward to future tax years subject to a maximum lifetime limit of $40,000. Carry forward room starts to accumulate after the FHSA is opened. The account holder is responsible for ensuring their maximum contribution room limit is not exceeded.

Since a qualifying withdrawal is non-taxable to the holder, certain conditions must be met for the holder to receive the withdrawal tax-free. When these conditions are met, a holder may withdraw funds at any time, unless restricted by investment terms (for example, a non-redeemable GIC that has not yet matured).

The conditions must be disclosed in a prescribed form provided by the CRA, and include the holder meeting the following terms:

  • First-time home buyer*
  • Resident of Canada
  • The withdrawal is made within 30 days of moving into the home
  • Has written agreement to buy or build a qualifying home before October 1st of the year following the withdrawal
  • The qualifying home is in Canada

A qualifying withdrawal does not generate taxable income and does not affect any income-tested benefits or credits of the holder.

Start saving for your first home - tax free

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Terms and conditions apply.

*The Creative Arts Financial First Home Savings Account (“Creative Arts Financial FHSA”) Promotional Interest Rate is only available between November 26, 2023 and April 1, 2024, exclusively (the “Promotional Period”). You can earn a special annual interest rate of 5.75% calculated daily and paid monthly during the Promotional Period on cash deposits to your Creative Arts Financial FHSA Investment Savings Account. To accept this offer, you must open a Creative Arts Financial FHSA Investment Savings Account during the Promotional Period and make a cash deposit to your eligible Creative Arts Financial FHSA Investment Savings Account during the Promotional Period. If you have an existing FHSA Investment Savings Account with Creative Arts Financial, the Promotional Interest Rate will automatically apply for the Promotional Period. This offer is available to new and existing members who are eligible for a First Home Savings Account and is subject to change without notice. Consult your tax advisor for eligibility criteria, features and tax implications.