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All document are PDFs, unless otherwise noted. 

Housing Decision Making Tool for Chiefs and Councils - FNNBOA and CCMC established a partnership where the expertise from both organizations can work together to improve the levels of health and safety of people living in Indigenous Communities. We are pleased to present a Housing Decision Making Tool for Chiefs and Councils. This tool is to help the Chiefs and Councils to reduce their housing liabilities, improve the quality of the homes and to make the houses last longer. 

Guide to Establish a Housing AuthorityMany First Nations are considering a housing authority.  Many view a housing authority as an important component of a self government framework. Ideally, a housing authority will be created through an arm’s length organization. 

FNNBOA with funding from Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) is pleased to announce their guide entitled, Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Housing Authorities and to Establish One in First Nations Communities.  The guide gives an overview on how to establish either a federal or provincial not for profit organization and how this becomes the housing authority. The guide gives sample band council resolutions to allow for a housing authority to be established and policies and procedures that need to be developed to ensure an arm’s length relationship between Council and the Housing Authority. Most importantly, the guide gives samples on the housing authority’s objectives. 

Finally, the guide shows how the housing authority is accountable back to the Council through independent audits and performance measures.

First Nations Rental Policy and Programs: Addressing Key Issues and Challenges - The purpose of this manual is to provide Chief and Council, Housing Authorities or Housing Committees a document to support the development and implementation of a rental programs within their communities. The manual also provides approaches to calculate rental rates and approaches to rent to own policies. 

Housing and Rental Operational Policy Framework - This document was developed to assists Chief and Council, Housing Departments or Housing Managers to establish housing policies that include policies on the collection of rent. The intended function of this document is to provide a convenient reference or as an advisory guide.

Basic Home Maintenance Guide for Tenants in First Nations Communities (version française) - This manual will help you as a tenant to perform simple maintenance to fix problems before they become major, expensive issues to repair. Before performing simple maintenance, it is important to contact the Housing Department in your community. They may not want their tenants performing certain maintenance or may have a preferred way to approach maintenance. 

Healthy Home Maintenance Checklist (version française)- This schedule is a good way to prevent home maintenance problems. You can perform many of the tasks yourself, but some you should leave to your Housing Department. Remember, safety first. Some home maintenance tasks are best left to the Housing Department.

Teleinspections for First Nations Remote Communities - FNNBOA has developed teleinspections that uses electronic information and telecommunication technologies to support building code compliance. Under teleinspections the builders are to provide photographs and other information electronically for review by a certified First Nations Building Officer in another part of Canada.

Alberta Building Code changes - The Alberta Building Code sets the requirements for the location of smoke alarms within dwelling units. Recent changes have been made to the new 2014 ABC.

Manual for Elected Councillors Responsible for Housing in First Nations Communities - First Nations governments are formed by a Chief and Councillors who are responsible for making decisions on behalf of the First Nation and its members. The following manual developed by FNNBOA is to provide general information to Councillors responsible for housing.

Report - On-Reserve Housing and Infrastructure: Recommendation for Change

FNNBOA welcomes the report just released by the Standing Senate Committee on Aboriginal Peoples, On-Reserve Housing and Infrastructure: Recommendation for Change. The Senate committee released an interim report on housing in February 2015. They have now released their final report, and it is a worthwhile read.

The report is the first major review on housing and infrastructure for First Nations communities since the Royal Commission on Aboriginal People reported in 1996.

FNNBOA participated in the Senate committee hearings by providing evidence, and many of our members and colleagues also appeared before the committee to provide their views on housing.

The report was completed after a two-year look at housing in First Nations communities.

The 13 recommendations in the report provide a framework for improving housing conditions for First Nations communities.  One of the major recommendations is to remove the 2 percent cap on annual increases in funding for on-reserve programs and services.

Other recommendations in the report include consulting with First Nations communities and organizations to address capacity concerns prior to developing legislation for the application of building codes on-reserve, and consulting with First Nations to explore creating a new ministerial loan guarantee program for First Nations governments to fund housing and infrastructure on reserve. The report also calls for the development of a housing strategy for remote and isolated First Nations communities.

You can read to the report here:


First Nations Housing and Building Crises: Management of the Change Process (PDF) - The purposes of this report are to present background information on home inspections in FN communities, to understand the challenges for why many Chiefs and Councils are not exercising their governance in terms of the authority having jurisdiction, and what the authority having jurisdictions implies with respect to the construction of homes.


An Exploratory Study on the Life Cycle of First Nations Homes (PDF) - Understand the life cycle of a home is important, especially when it comes to estimating the maintenance and repair cost of Chief and Council-owned homes. During planning, life-cycle costs are needed to evaluate alternate ways of meeting requirements (e.g., new construction, or renovation of existing facilities). During design, maintenance and repair costs for various types of components, such as built-up or shingle roofs, need to be calculated, so that the total life cycle cost of different designs can be minimized. Finally, once the home has been constructed, yearly predictions of maintenance and repair costs are needed so that enough funds can be programmed to ensure that the homes are maintained properly and do not deteriorate due to lack of maintenance.

Health Canada Survey of Radon in Canadian Homes (PDF) - Health Canada recently completed the analysis of the data from the first year of the Cross-Canada Survey of Radon Concentrations in Homes. This is a two year project to gather long-term (3-month or longer) indoor radon measurement results from across Canada. The goal of this study is to get a better understanding of radon levels so that we can better inform and help protect Canadians from the risks of long term radon exposure.


A Guide to Residential Wood Heating - Heating with wood can be challenging because it takes more active involvement than with other heating systems. Special knowledge and skills are also needed to successfully use this hands-on home heating option. If you heat with wood or are considering doing so, this comprehensive guide will provide you with the information you need to make sure your wood heat system is safe and efficient. You will also find helpful tips on how to effectively operate and maintain it.(© CMHC 2008) Download “A Guide to Residential Wood Heating

Fire Prevention in Aboriginal Communities – Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) offers a free manual and DVD to assist volunteer firefighters, housing managers and Aboriginal communities in their fire prevention efforts. The manual consists of ten case studies, each describing the efforts of a particular community concerning issues such as candle safety, chimney maintenance and arson prevention. Developed with the collaboration of the Aboriginal Firefighters Association of Canada (AFAC), the 20 minute DVD addresses the common causes of house fires in Aboriginal communities and suggests how to prevent them.

Greening the BC Building Code

On April 15, 2008, Minister responsible for Housing Rich Coleman announced that new Building Code requirements to increase energy and water efficiency would come into effect on September 5, 2008. These first steps in Greening the B.C. Building Code support the province's Throne Speech commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions related to buildings and construction. The new requirements have been developed in consultation with industry, local governments and the public:

  • Energy Efficiency Requirements for Single Family Houses and Smaller Multi-Family Residential, Commercial and Industrial Buildings

  • Insulation standards for houses and multi-family residential buildings under five stories have changed. There are new insulation standards for small commercial and industrial buildings.

  • For housing, builders can choose to achieve an EnerGuide rating of 77 as an alternative to meeting the insulation requirements.

  • Energy Efficiency Requirements for High-Rise Multi-Family Residential Buildings and Larger Industrial, Commercial and Institutional Buildings

  • Larger buildings must meet the American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air-Conditioning Engineers 90.1(2004) standard. ASHRAE 90.1 is an internationally recognized standard for energy efficiency in buildings.

  • Water Efficiency Requirements - Ultra low-flow toilets (6 L) and other water-saving plumbing fixtures and fittings will become mandatory in new construction and renovations.”

  • More information on the inclusion of a Part 10 into the Building codes which come into force in British Columbia on September 5th, 2008 and have an impact on those First Nation’s in British Columbia who have adopted the BC Building Codes are available here:

Seventh Report for the Standing Committee on Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development - Recommendations of this report include “comprehensive measures for capacity-building within Aboriginal communities in areas of construction and maintenance”


FNNBOA November 2005 Senate Presentation

FNNBOA Senate Presentation (PDF) - Original presentation document presented to the Standing Senate Committee on Aboriginal People.

Proceedings of the Standing Senate Committee on Aboriginal Peoples (PDF) - Presentation summary/transcript.

The November 24-25, 2004 Sectoral Follow-up Session on Housing was the fourth in a series of sessions intended to fulfill the commitment made by Prime Minister Paul Martin at the conclusion of the April 19, 2004. Canada-Aboriginal Peoples Roundtable on Strengthening the Relationship.

CMHC Policy and Research Division's Electronic Newsletters - The Policy and Research Division issues two electronic newsletters which may be of interest to you.

The Housing Technology E-Newsletter - Learn about CMHC's latest research findings and events. Topics include building envelope, moisture management, indoor air quality, building operation, residential water use and much, much, more.

The Housing Research E-newsletter - Stay up-to-date with the latest socio-economic housing research findings and events. Topics include sustainable community planning; improving housing market effectiveness, housing and population health, updates on household and housing conditions and trends, and housing solutions for "at risk" groups such as persons with disabilities, seniors, Aboriginals, immigrants, low-income Canadians and the homeless and more.

These newsletters are available free of charge to any external clients.

Case Studies of Major Home Energy Retrofits - New annual housing starts in Canada in recent years represent less than 2 per cent of the existing housing stock. If Canada addresses the energy consumption of new dwellings only, it will not achieve the greenhouse gas emissions targets of the Kyoto Accord. This project was designed to produce clear and demonstrable energy savings in existing housing through energy retrofitting so that these houses could be used as benchmarks for energy savings. The general target was that the post-retrofit house energy consumption, from all sources, should be at least 40 per cent lower than the pre-retrofit levels.

Housing and Health - Health Canada, First Nations and Inuit Health Branch (PDF)- The First Nations and Inuit Health Branch (FNIHB) contributes to the protection and promotion of the health and well-being of people living in First Nations communities south of 60° parallel through inspections and providing advice to occupants and community administration