Please note: the federal government is constantly updating their website as new information is announced. Remember to check Canada’s official coronavirus webpage and The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA)’s COVID-19 online hub to stay up to date.
As Canadian businesses continue to feel the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, and as the efficacy of support programs become clear, the federal government is updating programs and unveiling additional ones. Here is what’s new this week:
Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS)
During the Prime Minister’s daily press conference this morning (Friday, May 15), he announced the CEWS would be extended by an additional 12 weeks to August 29, 2020. He also stated the government would consult with key business over the next month on potential adjustments to the program to incent jobs and growth, including the 30% revenue decline threshold.
Enhancements to the CEWS has been a focal point of CREA’s lobbying efforts over the past month, and this extension will be critical to enabling brokerages to retain or rehire employees as restrictions are lifted in some areas and housing markets across the country begin to recover.
Regional Relief and Recovery Fund (RRRF)
Businesses looking for additional support can also contact their regional development agency to find out if they are eligible for the RRRF. The RRRF is a $1 billion fund that will mitigate the financial pressure experienced by businesses and organizations to allow them to continue their operations, including paying their employees. It will also support projects by businesses, organizations and communities to prepare now for a successful recovery.
The RRRF will be implemented by the six regional development agencies. To find out if your business qualifies for financial support, please contact your regional development agency directly:
- Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA)
- Canada Economic Development for Quebec Regions (CED)
- Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency (CanNor)
- Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario)
- Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario (FedNor)
- Western Economic Diversification Canada (WD)
More support programs
There are also funds available through the Business Credit Availability Program which is delivered through the Business Development Bank of Canada and Export Development Canada. If you are wondering whether your business qualifies, we encourage you to contact your financial institution.
CREA continues to advocate on several programs that have been announced and could be optimized to better support REALTORS® including:
- Pushing for expanded Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) eligibility to:
- Include wages (T4), commission payments (T4A) and dividend payments (T5), reflective of the diversity of business models impacted by COVID-19.
- Ensure it is available to all business structures, including sole proprietors who conduct their business though personal bank accounts.
- Pressing government for additional details on the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance Program and working with provincial associations as the program will be delivered by provincial governments.
Other government programs which may be relevant to REALTORS®:
- Canada Emergency Response Benefit
- 10% Temporary Wage Subsidy for Employers
- Large Employer Emergency Financing Facility
The measures covered in this notice are part of the Government of Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan. The government is constantly assessing the evolving situation and is likely to introduce additional measures as it deems necessary. We are monitoring the implementation of existing measures and continue to advocate on behalf of REALTORS® as new initiatives are developed.
This email is for information purposes only and is not a substitute for professional advice. If you need professional advice you should consult a lawyer, accountant or other qualified professional.