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City Council considers $10 million grant offer from FCM for Saskatoon home energy loan program – Saskatoon

A new program in Saskatoon to assist homeowners with energy efficiency upgrades is expanding.

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Despite much success, Amber Weckworth told a city committee on Monday that challenges have arisen since Home Energy Loan Program (HELP) was launched last year.

“For example, only two companies offer EnerGuide audits, making waiting times long. Weckworth, the city’s director of climate data and strategy, said:

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City of Saskatoon lends home energy upgrade

She said there has been lower program participation from qualified income participants.

Weckworth is seeking the city council to raise the income threshold for homeowners and approve $10 million in funding from the Federation of Canadian Cities.

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HELP launches on September 1, 2021, with $2.5 million available to lend to homeowners – enough for 100 participants with an average loan of $25,000.

Under the program, the costs of retrofitting homes to make them more energy efficient are paid for through a property tax, allowing homeowners with no capital to make changes while reducing their utility bills. their energy unit.

To date, the city has received 335 applications – 69 applications have been approved for funding.

The average loan to date is $29,700 with the total value of all approved projects under construction just over $510,000.

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FMC funding will allow HELP to offer more loans while also offering discounts and an education program, Weckworth said.

“These education and capacity building programs can be offered to all Saskatoon residents, not just HELP participants,” she said.

“These are still under development, but are likely to include citywide energy maps, renovating support platforms, training, education and resources for contractors, builders, brokers and related parties.”

The preferred option for rebates, she said, is to provide free items to income-qualified homes that can improve energy efficiency while providing standard discounts for those with low income. participants have homes built 1990 or earlier.

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“It maximizes available rebate budgets, which means providing discounts to more households while still targeting the most impactful build and retrofit types,” Weckworth said. , while providing additional benefits to income-qualified participants,” Weckworth said.

“This alternative is estimated to have the highest GHG reduction”.

Funding from FCM will help strengthen the HELP program, Ward 8 Coun said. Sarina Gersher.

“I know there have been some recommendations about potential partnerships with financial institutions or other institutions to create a sustainable source of funding that will propel us forward for another four years,” she said. .

“But I am also delighted to have the support of FCM to be able to elevate the program ahead of us and really be able to accommodate, in my opinion, the high interest from our community and being able to address problems with energy equipment in their homes. . ”

The recommendations from the committee will now be forwarded to the city council for adoption.


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City of Saskatoon lends home energy upgrade


City of Saskatoon home energy upgrade loan – September 1, 2021

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https://globalnews.ca/news/8601228/fcm-saskatoon-home-energy-loan-program/ City Council considers $10 million grant offer from FCM for Saskatoon home energy loan program – Saskatoon

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