Homesteading in Canada

Does anyone here know about homesteading in Canada? I heard a rumor that if you go out into the boonies and pave a road that you own everything within two miles of that road. Is that so?

I don’t believe homesteading is possible anymore. There was a law passed in 1872, called the Dominion Lands Act, that let people claim and farm vacant land in the prarie provinces. However, in the thirties, all that land was turned over by the national government to the provinces, and the Dominion Lands Act is no longer applicable.

No answer here but you might want to read this article.
When I was in Equador, if a person made use of you land for a set period of time, and you either didn’t know or did nothing about it, they owned the land.
I wonder if this is some ancient code or something that applies to many countries.
I don’t know if this helps you or not.
BTW. I live in Canada and have never heard of this.

I read this article yesterday about Homesteading in Alberta. I couldn’t tell if it was still relevant, as it seemed to have info from the 70s. Also, it didn’t tell me how much a section is, but it referred to needing to cultivate 10-40 acres per section, so that seems pretty big. If land can be procured at about $ 10 an acre, that’s a pretty good deal.

In the US, such is (were?) known as “squatter’s rights”. IANAL, so I don’t know if, where, or when such might have been codified into law.

A ‘section’ is one square mile.

I have heard of squatters’ rights although I’m not sure if that is still applicable here.

My grandparents homesteaded in Alberta in the 1960s, and yes, it was a very good deal.

Ah ha!

Yes, there are squatters’ rights, BUT, they do not bring with them legal ownership via title. The squatter would have to pay the owner of the land for the title.

On the terms of the owner or the squatter. In other words, does the owner have to sell in this situation?

From the link:

'Persons may obtain adverse possession of real property by meeting limitation periods and other requirements under certain provincial statute. Upon meeting these requirements, the registered owner’s rights are extinguished. Legal title, however, is not obtained by the person claiming adverse possession (commonly termed “squatters”) until a judgment from the Court is received certifying that the squatter has met the requirements to be granted title to the land and setting out the land to which the claim succeeds. In some cases, rather than obtaining judgment from the Court, the squatter enters into an agreement with the registered owner to transfer legal title to the land to the squatter. The amount paid by the squatter normally relates only to the land and does not include the value of any buildings or improvements to the land constructed by the squatter.

So, yes, it pretty much is on the squatters’ terms, but it sounds like money might change hands, although money for the land only, not the improvements upon the land.

Is all land in Canada owned?

I was reading a book called Maple Leaf Rag, a humourous travelogue of Canada and IIRC the author claimed that any land not owned by individuals in Canada belonged to the Crown.

I know someone who went up to British Columbia to homestead in the early 1970s. It turned out subsistance farming was a lot more difficult than Mother Earth News made it look, and he tried to get a cash job under the table, as he lacked the proper documentation to work in Canada. They deported his ass pretty quickly. I tried to tell him, but it looked so easy in the magazine. Damn hippie.

That’s correct, but not in the sense that Queen Liz owns great tracts of land in Canada. Title to unpatented land is vested in the Crown in right of the province in question (or in the territories, in the Crown in right of Canada). But private parties may be able to claim that land, either under a contract with the government in question; or through homestead programs (don’t know if any provinces still have homestead programs) or other statutory systems; or by way of aboriginal or treaty claims.