What Home Improvements fall under the Canada Greener Homes Grants?

Canada Greener Homes Grants - Sustainable Home Improvements

What Home Improvements fall under the Canada Greener Homes Grants?

Where to start from?

The Canadian federal government has introduced the Canada Greener Homes Grant intending to increase the adoption of clean energy sources so that every Canadian citizen should be able to apply for it. It is true to an extent because there are a few eligibility criteria that must be met to enjoy the benefits of the Grant. 

This blog is the second part of the whole series and is specifically dedicated to highlighting the eligibility laid out by the Canadian government that acts as the standard for this grant. Let’s see what retrofits are covered under this program.

Which Retrofits are covered within the grant?

Insulation Grant Overview:

Through the Canada Greener Homes Grant Initiative, homeowners can enhance their home insulation, effectively curbing heat loss and bolstering energy efficiency. This proactive measure not only fosters better energy utilization but also translates into tangible cost savings. 

Insulation's efficacy in impeding heat flow is gauged by both its R-value in imperial units and its Résistance Système International (RSI) value in metric units. 

Recommendations for insulation enhancements and incentive calculations hinge upon these values, underscoring their importance in the process. It's noteworthy that all purchases, including products and equipment, must be sourced from within Canada, with online acquisitions qualifying only if made through Canadian-based distributors.

  • Roof Assembly Grant:
    • Minimum 20% insulation of total roof area.
    • Grant amount prorated based on percentage insulated.
    • The maximum grant for any roof combination cannot exceed $1,800.
  • Exterior Wall Insulation Grant:
    • Minimum 20% insulation of exterior wall area.
    • Grant amount prorated based on percentage insulated.
    • Different eligibility for semi-detached, end unit, and middle unit row houses.
  • Exposed Floor Grant:
    • Apply insulation to cover the completely exposed floor surface.
    • Grant amount based on additional insulation, e.g., $350 for RSI 3.52 (R-20).
  • Basement Insulation Grant:
    • Minimum 20% insulation of basement wall area.
    • Combined grants for walls, headers, and slabs.
    • Maximum eligibility for semi-detached and middle-unit row houses.
  • Crawl Space Grant:
    • Insulate crawl space walls, headers, or ceiling.
    • A maximum grant of $1,500 for both basement and crawl space insulation.

Note: Eligibility criteria and grant amounts vary based on insulation levels and house type. Consult the provided table and guidelines for in-depth information.

Air Sealing Grant Overview:

Improving your home's draftiness stands out as the top priority for boosting energy efficiency through retrofits. It's the initial step to consider in any retrofit plan. Your Renovation Upgrade Report will outline specific goals for enhancing your home's airtightness. Typically, reaching the airtightness levels outlined in the report requires the expertise of an air-sealing specialist.

  • Options and Grant Amounts:
    • Meet Renovation Upgrade Report target: $550
    • Exceed target by 10%: $810
    • Exceed target by 20%: $1,000

Important Consideration: Adequate air sealing improves a home's comfort and energy efficiency. Achieving airtightness targets is crucial for grant eligibility.

Windows and Doors Grant Overview:

Improving the quality of windows and doors in a building not only boosts its energy efficiency but also significantly enhances overall comfort levels. By upgrading these key components, you can effectively regulate indoor temperature, reduce drafts, and minimize the loss of heat or cool air, thereby creating a more pleasant and sustainable living environment.

Moreover, the decision to upgrade windows and doors can be incentivized through the Canada Greener Homes Grant program. The allocation of grants typically depends on the scale of the upgrade, with the number of units replaced serving as a determining factor.

  • Windows Grant:
    • $125 per window
  • Doors Grant:
    • $125 per door

Important Consideration: Each window or door must be certified as ENERGY STAR® or better.

Thermostats Grant Overview:

Upgrading to a smart or programmable thermostat offers a myriad of benefits, chief among them being the effective management of heating and cooling systems, thereby significantly contributing to energy savings.

This heightened control not only reduces energy wastage but also leads to lower utility bills over time, making it a smart investment for both financial and environmental reasons.

To qualify for grant consideration, applicants must adhere to the following guidelines:

  • Integration with a retrofit for energy efficiency under the Canada Greener Homes Grant initiative is mandatory. This retrofit must be in conjunction with the proposed project.

  • Projects involving the installation of new heat pumps along with new thermostats are ineligible for grant consideration. Such combinations do not meet the criteria for this initiative.

  • To be eligible for grants, a resilience enhancement measure alongside a thermostat must be amalgamated with another energy efficiency measure. This bundling ensures a comprehensive approach to energy conservation.

  • All equipment procured must originate from Canadian sources. Purchases must be made within the country to support local suppliers and manufacturers.

  • Online acquisitions are acceptable only if conducted through distributors situated in Canada. This stipulation reinforces the importance of sourcing materials domestically, thereby contributing to the national economy.

Thermostat Grant: $50 per thermostat

Important Consideration: Ensure the new thermostat is ENERGY STAR certified or equivalent.

Space and Water Heating Grant Overview:

The Canada Greener Homes Grant Initiative does not cover furnaces and boilers, except for homeowners in northern and off-grid communities. Given Canada's cold climate, heating comprises a significant portion of home energy use.

Transitioning to energy-efficient heating options like heat pumps can lead to energy savings and potentially lower utility bills and carbon emissions. It's crucial to consider the lifetime energy costs alongside the initial purchase price. Discover more about efficient heating systems.

Important Note:

For grant eligibility, ensure a licensed professional installs your new heat pump, and it appears on the approved product lists available online. These lists undergo regular updates to guarantee access to rebates for compliant equipment models. All purchases must be made within Canada, with online orders only accepted from Canadian distributors.

  • Ground Source Heat Pumps (GSHP) Grant:
    • $5,000
  • Air Source Heat Pumps (ASHP) Grant:
    • $2,500 - $5,000
  • Domestic Hot Water Equipment Grant:
    • $1,000

Important Consideration: Only ENERGY STAR or equivalent products qualify. The grant amount for ASHP depends on the heating performance factor (HSPF).

Renewable Energy Grant Overview:

Renewable energy stems from natural processes that renew at a rate matching or exceeding consumption, such as solar power. The Canada Green Living Grant Initiative presents funding for installing solar photovoltaic (PV) setups, converting sunlight into electricity via panels and inverters.

If considering battery procurement for storing solar energy, part of the expense could qualify for climate resilience funding.

Qualification standards for solar PV grants include:

  • All purchases must occur within Canada.

  • Online acquisitions merit eligibility solely if sourced from domestic distributors.

  • The system necessitates one or more PV panels and CSA Standards-certified inverters, if applicable.

  • System peak power capacity must meet or exceed 1.0 kW DC.

  • For grid-connected systems, documentation of approval or interconnection permission from local electrical or building authorities is mandatory.
  • Photovoltaic Solar Panels Grant:
    • $1,000 per installed kW

Important Consideration: The installation of solar panels is necessary to adhere to the applicable relevant regulations and guidelines.

Resiliency Measures Grant Overview:

The repercussions of climate change frequently strike at our doorstep. Various environmental elements linked to climate shifts can jeopardize our homes, ranging from wildfires and floods to wind damage and power outages. Understanding your home's unique vulnerabilities about its location is crucial.

During home improvement endeavors, contemplate integrating supplementary retrofits aimed at fortifying your home and safeguarding your family against environmental hazards simultaneously.

It is imperative to merge the resilience strategies outlined below with an energy efficiency overhaul facilitated by the Canadian Greener Homes Grant initiative.

  • Resiliency Measures Grant:
    • $150 - $1,000

Important Consideration: Resiliency measures should be coupled with an energy efficiency retrofit within the framework of the Canada Greener Homes Grant initiative.

Low-Rise Multi-Unit Residential Buildings (MURBs) Grant Overview:

According to guidelines outlined in Part 9 of the National Building Code of Canada, a low-rise Multiple-Unit Residential Building (MURB) is described as a structure with three or fewer storeys above ground and a total building area not exceeding 600 square meters.

MURBs must feature either vertical stacking or a communal space. Adjoining units arranged side-by-side are categorized as row houses and do not fall under the MURB classification.

Dual-unit MURBs, which include residences with secondary suites, are eligible for the same incentives as both attached and detached houses. This includes access to grants for heat pumps and heat pump water heaters.

Retirement communities do not qualify for these incentives. Additionally, MURBs exceeding three above-ground storeys or surpassing 600 square meters in building area are ineligible for grant consideration.

  • Multiply Incentives:
    • 1x to 4x (2-17+ Units)

Important Consideration: The building must be three stories or less with a footprint of 600m2 or less.

Explore the comprehensive definition, eligibility criteria, and specifics regarding qualifying retrofits by accessing the complete information here.

What’s the Ending Note?

As we come to the end of this blog, we understand that the Canada Greener Homes Grant is not limited to only one or two retrofits but it covers various retrofits. From enhancing insulation to improving air sealing, upgrading windows and doors, installing efficient heating systems like heat pumps, and even venturing into renewable energy sources like solar power, there's a wide array of options available to homeowners looking to make their homes more energy-efficient and sustainable.  

It's crucial to understand the guidelines outlined by the Canadian government to ensure eligibility for these grants and to contribute towards a greener future.

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