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MAKING HOMES MORE ENERGY EFFICIENT TO REDUCE ENERGY BILLS AND CREATE JOBS

·7 min read

OTTAWA, ON, June 17, 2022 /CNW/ - By helping Canadians retrofit their homes to be more energy efficient, the Government of Canada is making life more affordable, creating good jobs, and creating a greener, cleaner environment for generations to come.

Govt of Canada Logo (CNW Group/Government of Canada)
Govt of Canada Logo (CNW Group/Government of Canada)

Today, the Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Housing and Diversity and Inclusion and Minister responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), announced the launch of the new Canada Greener Homes Loan homeowners stream. This program will provide $4.4 billion in interest-free loans, of up to $40,000 per household, and will be available for Canadians to undertake eligible retrofits.

The Canada Greener Homes Loan is launching in two phases. The first phase, starting on June 17, 2022, will be open to eligible homeowners who are applying or have an open application (pre-retrofit stage) to the Canada Greener Homes Grant. The second phase, starting in early September 2022, will expand the eligibility to homeowners who have closed their application (those who have requested their post-retrofit evaluation or grant), but still have remaining eligible retrofits they are interested in pursuing, that have not yet commenced.

The Canada Greener Homes Loan is an inclusive program designed to help up to 175,000 eligible homeowners undertake deeper, more costly retrofits that will have a significant impact in reducing a home's environmental footprint, energy bills, and in improving home resiliency.

The Canada Greener Homes Loan is part of the Canada Greener Homes Initiatives. The program builds on the Canada Greener Homes Grant offered by Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) in helping Canadian Homeowners across the country improve the energy efficiency of their home. The Canada Greener Homes initiatives helps eligible homeowners make their homes more comfortable and affordable to maintain while supporting Canada's environmental objectives, climate change plans and targets. These retrofits will also help stimulate the economy by creating good middle-class jobs in communities across the country.

Since its launch in May 2021, the Canada Greener Homes Grant has helped homeowners across the country retrofit their homes while creating good jobs for Canadians. As of June 8, over 171,000 applications have been received through the national portal, tens of thousands of files from eligible homeowners from our partner programs in Quebec and Nova Scotia are being processed; $38 million in grants have been sent to over 10,000 Canadians.

In addition to the grant and loan for homeowners, the Government of Canada announced an additional $458.5 million in funding for the low-income stream of the Canada Greener Homes Loan program through the Emission Reduction Plan (ERP) on March 29, 2022. The additional funding will enable affordable housing providers to make extensive energy retrofits with advantageous long-term financing and financial support. These retrofits will help mitigate climate change while improving the quality of life for the residents living in affordable housing. The additional funding will serve affordable housing providers such as non-profit housing and cooperative housing.

More details on eligibility and how to apply to the Canada Greener Homes Loan is now available on the website.

Additional details on the funding for affordable housing providers will be available at a later date. To sign up for more information visit the website.

Quotes:

"The environment and the economy go hand in hand. Today's investment will go a long way to help Canadians live more comfortably, by improving the energy efficiency of their homes while reducing our collective environmental footprint. This will also stimulate our economy by creating good jobs for the middle class. This is the National Housing Strategy at work."  – The Honourable Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Housing and Diversity and Inclusion and Minister responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

"Canadians are looking for ways to save money on their energy bills and do their part to fight climate change. We are driving economic activity and creating jobs by helping Canadians improve the energy efficiency of their homes. The Canada Greener Homes Initiatives are good for your wallet, good for the economy, and good for the planet." The Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Natural Resources

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As Canada's authority on housing, CMHC contributes to the stability of the housing market and financial system, provides support for Canadians in housing need, and offers unbiased housing research and advice to all levels of Canadian government, consumers and the housing industry. CMHC's aim is that by 2030, everyone in Canada has a home they can afford, and that meets their needs. For more information, follow us on Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn and Facebook.

FACTSHEET

  • Buildings, including homes, account for 13 per cent of Canada's greenhouse gas emissions. When taking into account space and water heating as well as electricity use for cooling, lighting, and appliances, this brings the total to 18 per cent. Retrofitting existing homes is an effective way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

  • Budget 2021, through the Canada Greener Homes Loan provides $4.4 billion in interest-free loans of up to $40,000 to help up to 175,000 homeowners complete extensive home retrofits.

  • The Canada Greener Homes Grant, launched last year, serves as the starting point for homeowners looking to take advantage of the newly launched loan program. These complimentary programs are designed to help Canadians make their homes more comfortable and affordable to maintain while supporting Canada's environmental objectives and creating jobs in communities across the country. New applicant who are eligible for the grant and who have completed a certified EnerGuide evaluation and have not commenced their retrofits, may choose to apply to the loan to further finance their home retrofits.

  • To apply to the Canada Greener Homes Grant, homeowners can go online to register, plan, and document their progress, which includes applying for their EnerGuide evaluations, choosing from a list of eligible retrofits, and applying for reimbursement. Residents of Quebec and Nova Scotia need to apply directly through their provincial programs to book their EnerGuide evaluation and register. If a homeowner chooses to apply to the loan in addition to the grant, they must ensure they do not start their retrofits before being approved for the loan.

  • The loan program is designed so that eligible homeowners can receive between $5,000 and  $40,000 in an interest-free loan to be paid back over a 10-year period. The initial loan amount is based on the estimated costs of the intended retrofits, less the estimated grant amount, and adjusted to take into account market norms.

  • To participate in these initiatives a homeowner's primary residence must be at least six months old, from the date of occupancy by the first homeowner, and eligible for an EnerGuide evaluation. Residences include single and semi-detached houses, row housing, townhomes, mobile homes on a permanent foundation, permanently moored floating homes, small multi-unit residential buildings (up to three storeys with a footprint of up to 600m2), and mixed-use buildings (residential portion only). Retrofits that help protect homes from weather events – such as floods, wind damage, and power outages – are also eligible for the grant if they are done in combination with measures that improve energy efficiency.

  • Loans are distributed following the completion of a homeowner's retrofits as well as both EnerGuide evaluations, and once the necessary documentation is uploaded to the Greener Homes portal. Homeowners are expected to make equal monthly payments over a ten-year loan term. However, they will also have the ability to make full or partial payments at any time without penalty to enable faster repayment of their interest-free loan.

  • Budget 2022 proposes to provide an additional $458.5 million over the program duration to provide low-interest loans and grants to low-income housing providers as part of the low-income stream of the Canada Greener Homes Loan program. This program will be available at a future date.

  • Home energy retrofits that reduce consumption of heating oil and natural gas will also reduce greenhouse gas emissions while saving money.

  • The additional $458 million in funding will not be available to homeowners, who are already served by the Canada Greener Homes Initiatives.

SOURCE Government of Canada

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