Making Energy Efficiency Accessible with Ontario’s HER+ Program

Are you a homeowner in Ontario looking to make your home more energy-efficient? If so, you’re in the right place. The Ontario Home Energy Retrofit (HER+) program is here to support you in your journey toward sustainable living. This initiative empowers Ontario customers to make environmentally friendly home improvements that reduce energy bills.

About The Program

The Ontario Home Energy Retrofit (HER+) program and the Canada Greener Homes Loan are two initiatives that work in synergy to make homes more energy-efficient across Ontario. These initiatives focus on reducing residential properties’ environmental impact while helping homeowners save on energy costs.

The HER+ program, specifically designed for Ontario homeowners, offers financial support to undertake a variety of energy-efficient modifications. These may include improvements to insulation, heating systems, and the installation of energy-efficient appliances. The program aims to make energy-saving measures affordable and achievable for homeowners.

Complementing the HER+ program, the Canada Greener Homes Loan offers interest-free loans of up to $40,000 to Canadian homeowners for comprehensive home retrofits. This loan aims to assist homeowners in financing their home’s energy retrofits, thus improving their home’s energy efficiency and resilience. The loan must be applied for with the Canada Greener Homes Grant, necessitating a pre-retrofit EnerGuide evaluation.

Together, these programs offer a comprehensive approach to improving energy efficiency in Ontario homes. Both initiatives provide critical financial support, enabling homeowners to invest in necessary home improvements. Importantly, homeowners must be mindful that the sale of their property triggers a requirement for the full repayment of the loan.

Creating an Account and Applying for HER+

If you’re a first-time user interested in the HER+ program, you can create an account directly at Canada Green Homes Loan Ontario Portal . However, if you’re an existing loan client from the GHG NRCan portal, you may need to request a switch to participate in the Enbridge HER+. To make this switch, simply contact Canada Greener Homes Loan support. 

Qualifying & Applying for Ontario's HER+

Common Misconceptions About The Program

While the Home Energy Retrofit (HER+) program in Ontario is a beneficial initiative for homeowners looking to enhance energy efficiency, several misconceptions often arise:

  1. HER+ Loans Cover All Retrofit Costs: While the HER+ program does offer loans to cover a portion of the retrofit costs, it’s important to note that the loan amount may not cover all the expenses. Homeowners are solely responsible for all additional costs associated with the retrofits not covered by the loan.

  2. HER+ Loans Are Available Immediately: Applying for a loan through the HER+ program involves several steps. Homeowners must complete a pre-retrofit EnerGuide evaluation and receive a Renovation Upgrade Report outlining the recommended retrofits. Only after these steps can they apply for the loan, and the funding isn’t released until after the retrofit work is completed and validated through a post-retrofit evaluation.

  3. The Homeowner Can do all Retrofit Work: The HER+ program permits homeowners to perform some retrofit work, but this is not the case for all upgrades. Some retrofits, such as installing heat pumps, require professional installation.

  4. The Loan Repayment Timeline is Flexible: It’s important for homeowners to understand that selling the house will trigger an immediate requirement to repay the loan in full. Also, the loan has a repayment term of ten years, with equal monthly payments expected over this period. However, early full or partial repayments can be made without penalty.

  5. There’s No Deadline for Retrofit Completion: Homeowners have 12 months to complete the retrofits and obtain a post-retrofit evaluation after the loan agreement date. They should contact the program team to discuss potential solutions if they expect to exceed this timeline.

Navigating the various facets of home retrofit programs like Ontario’s HER+ and the Canada Greener Homes Loan can feel overwhelming. From understanding the initial requirements and selecting appropriate energy-saving retrofits to ensure the correct completion of the projects, each step is crucial for maximizing benefits and making your home more energy-efficient.

GreenThink, with its knowledgeable Energy Advisors, is dedicated to supporting homeowners throughout this journey. The team will help simplify the process, answering all your queries about the programs, eligibility criteria, application process, and more. They’re also experts in assessing what energy upgrades would be most beneficial for your specific needs, ensuring you can take full advantage of these initiatives’ opportunities.

Whether you’re just starting to consider a home retrofit or are already underway with the process and have questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to GreenThink. Their guidance can make a significant difference in your quest for a greener, more energy-efficient home.

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