The City of Toronto is working together with residents and businesses to make Toronto the most sustainable city in North America. The City has a goal of reducing our greenhouse gas emissions by 80% by the year 2050 in an effort to help mitigate the effects of climate change and to improve our air quality. Did you know that one of the largest contributors to greenhouse gas emissions is the heating and cooling of buildings – including homes? The City currently offers two programs directed at homeowners to help them reduce their energy use, conserve resources, save money and help the environment at the same time.
Home Energy Loan Program (HELP)
The Home Energy Loan Program (HELP) is an innovative financing tool which provides low-interest loans to homeowners to make their home more energy efficient. A large number of houses in Toronto are old and inefficient, leading to higher energy bills and greenhouse gas emissions. Additionally, the top major barrier for homeowners to make their older homes more energy efficient is access to financing, as some of these projects can be costly.
Through the HELP program, the City provides financing for home energy efficiency improvements to owners of detached, semi-detached and row houses. Types of eligible projects include high efficiency furnace/boiler/central air conditioner, new windows or doors, and air sealing (for example, weather stripping or caulking). The loans provided by the City are tied to the property, not the property owner, so that if the owner moves before the loan is paid back, the remaining amount transfers to the new owner.
By making your home more energy efficient, you can lower your monthly energy bills, make your home more comfortable for your family and increase the value of your home.
Eco-Roof Incentive Program
The City also offers the Eco-Roof Incentive Program which provides funding for green and cool roofs. A green roof is a roof surface that supports the growth of vegetation over a substantial portion of its area for the purpose of water and energy conservation. It is comprised of a waterproofing membrane, drainage layer, organic growing medium (soil) and vegetation. A cool roof is a roofing system with an exterior surface with high “solar reflectivity” and “thermal emissivity” that reflects the sun’s rays and reduces heat build-up from the sun’s thermal energy. A cool roof can be either a coating applied over an existing roof system or a new single-ply waterproofing membrane.
Eco-roofs help reduce urban heat and associated energy use in Toronto, which is a particular concern as global temperatures rise. Green roofs also help manage storm-water runoff (reducing the pollutants that enter the waterways), enhance biodiversity, and improve air quality.
Before beginning an energy efficiency project, the program staff encourage homeowners to visit the City of Toronto website to learn about how they can apply. The application process is simple, and the staff team is available to provide guidance throughout the process.
Thinking of installing a high efficiency furnace or air conditioner in your home? Post Your Project to easily describe your HVAC needs and connect with Verified by eRenovate™ HVAC contractors who will provide you with ballpark estimates.