Introduction to the Canada Greener Homes Grant
If you’ve ever felt that you might like to make your home more sustainable but that the cost was out of reach, the Canada Greener Homes Grant program might be for you!
This program was initiated in May 2021 and, generally speaking, if you own a home and live in it as your primary residence, then you’re eligible to enroll (check the website for specific requirements)!
The Canada Greener Homes grant allows for reimbursements of portions of renovations to decrease energy usage and reduce the carbon footprint of our homes – the maximum grant value from all renovations completed in the scope of the program is $5,000. Examples of eligible expenses include replacement of doors and windows, installation of solar panels, and air sealing, among others.
We applied to the program earlier this year and have already had a number of solar panels added to our existing array (see here for background on our panels!) and I’m sharing about our experience along with some information on the steps of the program below. Please refer to the program website for specific requirements – if any discrepancies between the this blog and the website, then of course rely on the information on the official program page here.
Steps to Making Your Home More Sustainable with the Greener Homes Grant
Step 1: Go to the website, check your eligibility, read about the Greener Homes Grant and process, and register as a new applicant if you’re eligible.
This was a simple process, and we heard from the program relatively quickly!
Step 2: You’ll be contacted by a representative of the program to schedule your pre-retrofit EnerGuide evaluation.
Our experience with this element of the program was that it was simple to schedule once we received the go-ahead, and the assessment itself only took a few hours for our home. Our assessment was a few hundred dollars, and won’t be reimbursed until we make an approved retrofit and follow the requirements to complete the program. We received the assessment a few weeks later and the information it contained was very interesting! For example, about 30% of our home’s total energy usage goes toward heating hot water which is useful to know in order to pinpoint what investment will make the largest difference in our energy usage.
Step 3: Review recommendations in the assessment and plan which ones would make the most sense to implement in your home.
We decided to expand our solar panel array (and were able to do that quite quickly as our contractor was available) and are still looking into the option of a heat pump hot water heater. Carefully review the program reimbursements to see how much you would be eligible for given your planned renovations. For example, we didn’t qualify to receive a grant for the whole amount of our solar panels. Rather, the reimbursement will end up being about 50% of the cost of the panels and installation. Find out how much is eligible for reimbursement for various changes you might opt for here!
Step 4: Schedule your post-retrofit EnerGuide evaluation and apply for the Greener Homes Grant.
In order to apply for the grant that will include $600 towards the EnerGuide evaluations, and the eligible portion of any renovations/retrofits completed up to $5,000 total in grant funds, you will have to schedule another evaluation of your home to identify the difference in your home’s energy usage as a result of the changes.
We haven’t done this yet as we’re still trying to determine if there are any other changes that we want to make before exiting the program, but will be interested to see how the rest of the process goes!
Step 5 is receiving your Greener Homes Grant funds, looking forward to this part!
Have you made any changes to your home to make it more sustainable?