Thursday, January 29, 2009

Energy Efficient Savings

There are two great programs offering savings to those who purchase or upgrade their home to be more energy efficient.

Mortgage Insurer Rebate Program: Both CMHC and Genworth offer a 10% premium rebate for individuals who either purchase an energy efficient home or upgrade their home to be more energy efficient. Homes must be an energy efficient R-2000 model or have an energy rating of 77 or more.

STEP 1: Find out how energy efficient the home is
STEP 2: Boost the energy rating!
STEP 3: Arrange a CMHC or Genworth insured mortgage
STEP 4: confirm the improvements (if applicable)
STEP 5: Get your refund!
Please click on the following links for more information on these programs:
CMHC or Genworth

ecoENERGY Retrofit: Similar to the above mentioned rebate programs, the ecoENERGY Retrofit grant is based on the type and number of energy efficient improvements made, and how energy efficient the home improvements are.
The improvements don’t have to be complicated! They can be as simple as installing energy efficient windows or basement insulation!
STEP 1: Obtain a home energy assessment before and after your upgrades
STEP 2: Complete the improvements either on your own or hire a contractor (Document your renovations with receipts, photos, product guides)
STEP 3: You have 18 months from the date of the first assessment to complete the upgrades and complete a second energy assessment
Please click here for more information on the ecoENERGY Retrofit

More useful links on other Canadian rebates and grants!
Rebates and incentives for Selected Energy Star Qualified Products in Canada
Energy Star Home Appliances
EnerGuide and R-2000 Ratings
Bullfrog Power

Home Renovation Tax Credit

With the 2009 budget, the Government of Canada has added a Home Improvement Tax Credit (up to $1,350) to help Canadian homeowners. To qualify, home renovations must be completed before February 1st 2010. The credit may be claimed for the 2009 tax year on eligible expenses over $1,000 but not exceeding $10,000 and will provide up to $1,350 in tax relief.
*Source: Canada’s Economic Action Plan Budget 2009 Jan 27, 2009
Click here for more information on the HRTC.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Bank of Canada Cuts Key Lending Rate to a Record Low!

Earlier today the Bank of Canada lowered it's key lending rate to 1%, the lowest it's been in over 50 years! A few mortgage lenders have followed suit by lowering their prime rate to 3%. This is great news for anyone with a variable rate mortgage! The latest move by the BoC shows an aggressive attempt to boost the economy.
The BoC meets again on March 3rd to revisit interest rates.