BMO Bank of Montreal and Cowichan Tribes today signed a Letter of Intent to implement an on-reserve housing loan program on Cowichan Tribes territory.
The BMO Cowichan On-Reserve Housing Loan Program is an innovative lending program that will provide housing loans for the purchase or construction of owner-occupied, single family homes or for major renovations to existing homes.
In conjunction with the Chief and Council of Cowichan Tribes, the Sustainable Housing Department and the community, BMO’s Duncan Branch has customized a financial solution to assist Cowichan Tribes address their housing requirements. The program eliminates government involvement from the lending process and offers options to qualified members of Cowichan Tribes to create a housing loan the way they want it.
“I am happy about Cowichan Tribes relationship with BMO Bank of Montreal,” said Chief Harvey Alphonse, Cowichan Tribes. “Cowichan Tribes Council fully supports the opportunity, after many years, to be able to offer eligible tribes’ members the ability to build a home of their choice without limitations except for high standards and quality.”
“We congratulate all participants in coming together to design and deliver a unique financing program that will provide Cowichan Tribes and its members with quality, affordable and healthy housing,” said Ron Jamieson, Senior Vice-President, Aboriginal Banking, BMO Bank of Montreal. “Cowichan Tribes has been a BMO customer since 1996 and we welcome the respect and trust the community has placed in the bank throughout our financial relationship.”
To date, BMO Bank of Montreal has initiated 14 on-reserve housing loan programs with authorized borrowings of $28.3MM. With the launch of the program on Cowichan Tribes territory on Vancouver Island, the BMO On-Reserve Housing Loan program is now national in scope.
The Cowichan Tribes reserves are located in the southern portion of Vancouver Island, neighboring the City of Duncan within the Cowichan Valley Regional District and North Cowichan District. The area is surrounded by the Malahat mountain range and the Georgia Strait. The area was first inhabited by the Cowichan Tribes of the Coast Salish Nation.
With the warmest temperatures in the country, Cowichan is translated into the “warm land”. Cowichan members number approximately 3,700 with one half residing on the reserves.
About BMO Bank of Montreal
BMO Bank of Montreal is a member of BMO Financial Group, one of the largest financial services providers in North America. BMO Financial Group serves clients across Canada and in the Unites States through its Canadian retail arm, BMO Bank of Montreal, through its Chicago-based Harris Bank, a major U.S. mid-west financial services organization, and through BMO Nesbitt Burns, one of Canada’s leading full-service investment firms. BMO Bank of Montreal has 12 full service branches and four community banking outlets serving Aboriginal communities across Canada.