Cambridge couple shares how rebates helped make their home comfortable


Here’s one of the stories that we share in our 2016 Report to the Community about how we help you live sustainably.

Imagine turning off your heat in December and not noticing for three days that you never turned it back on. That may be hard to believe but that is  exactly what Johanne and Marcel Girard of Cambridge shared by video to  those attending our 2015 awards event.

When they decided to embark on a major renovation of their century home,  they arranged for an EnerGuide Home Evaluation by one of REEP Green Solutions’ team of Certified Energy Advisors (CEA). What they learned was   that much of their heat was making its way outside.

Their CEA laid out for them the criteria to qualify for the Union Gas Home Reno Rebate program. By doing two projects to improve their home energy efficiency, they qualified for $2,095 in rebates including the costs of the home evaluations before and after the renovations.

Initially, the Girards just wanted to replace their baseboards. It became a bigger project when they discovered their walls didn’t have any insulation but they learned that they could get a rebate for adding it if they had a home energy evaluation.

Their CEA recommended insulating the walls, which in their case meant gutting rooms to the stud and adding batt insulation with a vapour barrier.

The difference their work made has been dramatic. They are on balanced payments for their natural gas based on their previously leaky home. At the end of their first year in the upgraded house, they received $994 back because they had cut their use of natural gas by 37%. They also saved $25 monthly on their electrical costs.

“I can turn on the heat on a cold day for a couple hours and the house stays warm throughout the day,” says Johanne. “And I’m a chilly willy, if I say the house is warm, it’s warm!”

As the Province of Ontario rolls out an enhanced home energy upgrade  program, there will be more opportunities across the Region to increase the warmth and comfort of our homes while reducing heating costs. See our website for complete details.

ClimateActionWR reports that 22% of local greenhouse gas emissions come  from our homes’ energy use. Having a home energy evaluation and implementing the recommendations is important so that your home can be a  part of the solution to climate change.


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