Seniors Home Adaptation and Repair Program (SHARP) — Information for Contractors
General Program Information
On July 1, 2016, the government introduced the Seniors Home Adaptation and Repair Program (SHARP). This program will allow senior homeowners age 65 and older to finance home repairs and adaptations through a low-interest home equity loan with the Alberta government.
Under SHARP, a maximum home equity loan of $40,000 will be available to single seniors and senior couples with an annual total income of $75,000 or less, and who have a minimum of 25 per cent home equity.
Consumer Protection Information
This new program includes consumer protection measures to ensure seniors know their rights when hiring contractors and entering into contracts. As a contractor operating in Alberta, you should be aware of the following:
- SHARP will consider the reasonableness of the cost or fees to the senior for a home repair, renovation or adaptation as part of the loan approval process.
- Seniors who apply to the program will have contract cancellation rights if the senior is not eligible for a loan, has not waived their right to cancel and has not accepted any of the goods or services agreed to in the contract.
- All current requirements for contractors and protections afforded to consumers under the Fair Trading Act still apply.
- SHARP legislation ensures consumers get the information they need when they enter into a contract by obligating contractors and suppliers to carry out specific duties.
The following information summarizes contractor (supplier) duties and obligations as set out in the Seniors Home Adaptation and Repair Act (Act) and the Seniors Home Adaptation and Repair Regulation (Regulation). In the event of any conflict or discrepancy between the information on the Ministry of Seniors and Housing website and the Act and Regulation, the Act and Regulation shall take precedence. You are encouraged to click on the links to the Act and Regulation to verify the current information.
Before entering into a contract with a consumer, contractors (suppliers) are required to:
- Advise the consumer that the Seniors Home Adaptation and Repair Program (SHARP) is available to provide home equity loans to cover the costs of home repairs, renovations or adaptations that are reasonably necessary for the maintenance, structural integrity or energy efficiency of the home or for the health, safety or mobility of the occupants.
- Advise the consumer that if the consumer's application for a SHARP loan to cover some, or all, of the costs of the goods and/or services agreed to in the contract is received by SHARP within 45 days of the date of the contract, that the consumer has the right to cancel the contract if:
- the consumer is notified by SHARP that their application for a loan is not approved, and
- the consumer has not chosen to waive their cancellation rights, in writing, as authorized in the standardized written Seniors Home Adaptation and Repair Program statement of cancellation rights included in the contract, and
- the consumer has not accepted delivery of the goods and/or provision of the services agreed to in the contract, in whole or in part.
- Provide the consumer a standardized written Seniors Home Adaptation and Repair Program statement of cancellation rights, in the prescribed format as per the Schedule, which is included in the contract.
- Refund any money paid to them by the consumer, under the contract, within 15 days if the consumer cancels the contract within 30 days of receiving notification from the Seniors Home Adaptation and Repair Program that the consumer is not eligible for a loan.
Method of Contract Cancellation
The notice of cancellation may be given by any means, including, but not limited to, personal service, registered mail, courier or fax, or by any other method, including orally, by which the consumer can provide evidence of the date that the consumer cancelled the contract.
Cancellation of a contract in accordance with the Seniors Home Adaptation and Repair Act means that the
- any related transaction
- any guarantee with respect to money payable
- any credit arranged by the supplier whether or not included in the contract
- any security given by the consumer
is cancelled as if it never existed. When the contract is an offer to buy, the offer is withdrawn.
In the case of cancellation, any money paid to the supplier must be returned to the consumer within 15 days of the contract cancellation.
Need More Information?
If you want more information about the Seniors Home Adaptation and Repair Program:
The information on this website is provided for your personal or educational use only. It is not legal advice.