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Canadians now won’t need to pay upfront for home energy upgrades

How to get Canada's new "Greener Homes" $40,000 interest-free loan

In a previous post, we explained that Canadian homeowners may be eligible to get a $5000 grant for their home energy upgrade. Canada has expanded this program to include a $40,000 interest-free loan. Below we explain what it is

Greening the home without the upfront green

A complete energy upgrade of the home can be expensive. Many homeowners welcome the opportunity to spread out the cost of the renovation through financing. Financing the upgrades means that you can enjoy a healthier, more comfortable home earlier. The energy savings as the result of the upgrades can go into paying back the loan.

The Greener Homes Loan program addresses major challenges of the past financing options. Here is a summary:

Pros Cons
  • Adds on top of the $5000 grant
  • Interest free for 10 years, saving hefty and rising interest rates of the typical financial institutions.
  • Is given as Unsecured personal loan on approved credit, not requiring collateral (pending a credit check).
  • Only for upgrades recommended by an energy advisor.
  • Does not apply to the work already started.
  • Can be slow to process.

Let’s use a typical scenario as an example to see how the loan process works.

Green home energy financing

Eligible upgrades for the loan

The upgrades that are eligible for the grant are eligible for the loan program too.

The first types eligible upgrades are related to the building insulation. Up to $5,000 of grants plus the loan can be claimed for insulating:

You may notice that windows are missing from the above. They are accounted for separately. Each window rough opening is eligible for up to $250 grants. In addition, up to $1,000 can be claimed for sealing the home’s air leaks (draft proofing). Needless to say that the loan covers these as well.

The loan covers heating, cooling, and hot water systems too when it comes to heat pumps. A maximum grant of $5,000 was already available for heat pump installation. Now the loan can cover costs over that. These can be added to many local incentives for installing heat pumps.

Energy generation is next on the list. The grant program allows for up to $5,000 for Solar Panels (PVs) & Renewable energy. The loan can supplement further costs.

Finally, the following can only be eligible if you are doing another upgrade:

Getting and using the loan

To secure this loan, simply follow our steps to get the $5,000 grant. The interest-free loan is part of the process. Once you have the Energy Advisor’s recommendations, you can apply for the loan and find out the amount you can take out. Then find your contractor to get the work started.

The program allows for 15% of the loan to be taken in advance. This may be the deposit for your contractor. The rest is available once the work is complete and verified by the EA.

Sounds complicated? Properate can help you navigate this process. Head over to our step by step assessment tool to get started.

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