Home Energy Conservation Government Grants – ecoENERGY Revisited – 3

Editor’s Note: Over the holidays we are re-publishing selected articles related to our ecoENERGY energy conservation experiences. Some of the grant amounts may have changed. To access the more than 20 articles we have written on our energy conservation experiences through the ecoENERGY Residential Retrofit program, simply use this link to access our ecoENERGY Energy Conservation page.

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So far we have looked at the EnerGuide Rating within the ecoENERGY Grant’s Energy Efficiency Evaluation Report. Now we begin by looking at the recommendations specific to our house. Again, this Report is quite something……and we are still only on the first page.

The Recommendations summary  is sorted by those recommendations with the greatest potential for savings if implemented by us, the house owner.

energy audit report page 1 recommendation basement Home Energy Conservation Government Grants   ecoENERGY Revisited   3

First, notice the ‘total incentive value of $5000?. This to me is extremely disappointing. [Editor's Note: Currently, the ecoENERGY's average Federal grant payout to an individual household over the first 6 months of Year 3 for the program is less than $1,400, so for most folks this is not a concern.]

As a commentary on our nation, if we are serious about the battle against global warming, why limit the house owner on the incentives to make their home more energy efficient? One could argue that to not have any limits would provide incentive for fraud. Well, which is worse, establishing the necessary checks and balances to prevent such fraud or global warming? It had to be asked, so I thought I would do just that.

Second, notice the Incentive column on the right of the above energy efficienty assessment (i.e. energy audit) report. Now, remember this: many Provinces in Canada have a matching program. In Ontario, they will match the Federal Grant money under the ecoENERGY Grant program with the same amount of of their own. In other words, if the homeowner is eligible for a $1,000 Federal grant, Ontario will also provide another $1,000 grant. [Editor's Note: Remember, currently the program has a time limited 25% increase for individual grants unaffecting the total incentive available]

So, does the Incentive column in the above recommendation section represent the combined Federal and Provincial grant money, or just the Federal grant? It doesn’t say. So, we called up the company we contracted to undertake the ecoENERGY Energy Efficiency Evaluation. Their answer…….just the Federal portion. VERY COOL! So, remember, any grant money shown in this series of posts is just the Federal portion……..double it for the total amount of grant money for which we are eligible.

Now, the first recommendation as you can see is for us to increase our basement insulation. Or is it? What you may remember from pictures of our basement in prior articles, is that our basement is already finished. The only part of the basement that does not have drywall on it is the very small ‘work room’ containing a laundry tub, work bench, and so on.

basement workroom Home Energy Conservation Government Grants   ecoENERGY Revisited   3

This room, which is where we store the materials and products used in our money saving tips and home renovation tips activities, accounts for no more than 12% of our total basement square feet.

So, how can this be? And, if it is only for that small work area, the cost to us will not be anywhere near $1,000 to insulate and drywall. Doesn’t make sense.

Tomorrow we will let you know what happened when we called the firm we used for our Energy Efficiency Evaluation under the ecoENERGY Grant program.

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