Federal program pays you thousands for a more energy efficient home

Federal program pays you thousands for a more energy efficient home

Canadian homeowners can receive grants of up to $ 5,000 to improve the energy efficiency of their homes and reduce energy bills. The new Canada Greener Homes Grant program also includes up to $ 600 to help with home energy assessment costs.

Homes and buildings account for 18 percent of Canada’s carbon dioxide emissions and must be reduced significantly in order for Canada to achieve its new climate target of 40 to 45 percent reductions in carbon dioxide emissions by 2030.

“Improving the energy efficiency of our homes not only reduces pollution, but also creates new jobs, economic growth and a cleaner future for everyone,” said Prime Minister Justin Trudeau at the start of the program on April 27th.

Eligible home improvements and upgrades include:

  • Improvement of heating and cooling systems – for example with heat pumps

  • Purchase of renewable energy systems such as solar panels

  • Replace windows and doors

  • Add insulation

  • Sealing of air leaks

Retrofits that help protect homes from weather events such as flooding, wind damage and power outages may also be eligible

“It’s a modest program and very similar to previous energy efficiency scholarship programs,” said Nic Rivers, Canadian research chair in climate and energy policy at the University of Ottawa. The CO2 reductions will also be modest, between five and 10 percent per home, based on previous programs, Rivers said in an interview.

“People really want to do something for the climate, so there will be interest.”

A worker installs solar panels on the roof of a new house.  (Mischa Keijser. Cultura. Getty Images)

A worker installs solar panels on the roof of a new house. (Mischa Keijser. Cultura. Getty Images)

A worker installs solar panels on the roof of a new house. (Mischa Keijser. Cultura. Getty Images)

A wide variety of homes are eligible, but the program is limited to 700,000 homes. After completion, retrofits must be evaluated by certified energy consultants in order to be reimbursed for the costs. In order to meet the expected demand, up to 2,000 new energy consultant jobs will be created across the country.

“It’s good to see that the federal government is finally back to helping Canadians improve their energy efficiency,” said Brendan Haley, Policy Director at Efficiency Canada, a non-partisan organization based at Carleton University that is transforming Canada into a global one leading organization would like to make in energy efficiency.

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Haley told The Weather Network that energy retrofits have three benefits: they reduce carbon emissions and make living more comfortable, while saving homeowners money.

The Greener Home program has a big loophole by leaving out low-income Canadians who are unlikely to be able to prepay for retrofits or get a home renovation loan. The second part of the federal government’s program includes interest-free loans up to $ 40,000. Haley hopes there will be something for low-income families when this program kicks off this summer.

Retrofit light is installed (BanksPhotos. E +. Getty Images)

Retrofit light is installed (BanksPhotos. E +. Getty Images)

One person installs an LED retrofit lamp in a ceiling light. (BanksPhotos. E +. Getty Images)

Switching heating fuels from gas and oil to electricity can significantly reduce CO2 emissions. Approximately 82 percent of Canada’s electricity production comes from non-carbon sources such as hydro, wind and nuclear. This is where installing an electric heat pump can make a huge difference, says Haley.


Advances in electric air source heat pumps mean that they can cool and heat very efficiently even when the outside temperature is -20 ° C. Like an inverted refrigerator, heat pumps take heat from the outside air and transfer it into your home. For cooling purposes, heat pumps extract the heat from your house. New air source heat pumps can reduce energy consumption by 40 to 50 percent and dehumidify better than conventional central air conditioning systems.

Getting the right heat pump and a well-insulated house can mean your stove seldom turns on, says Haley. And in contrast to an energetic renovation, this can be done in one afternoon.

With homes and buildings accounting for 18 percent of Canada’s emissions, major energy upgrades will be required to cut that total in half.

If Canada is to achieve its ultimate goal of net zero carbon emissions by 2050, it needs the industry and the technology to make deep energy retrofits easier, more effective, and affordable.

“We need to be inspired and make profound energetic renovations a national goal,” said Haley.

Thumbnail Credit: Blend Images – Don Mason. Getty Images

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