Whether you are purchasing an energy-efficient home or retrofitting an existing home, a 10% Refund on your CMHC Mortgage Loan Insurance Premium may be available.
Do you like saving money? Are you an environmentally conscientious consumer? Are you planning on renovating your current home or purchasing a new one? If you have answered yes to these questions then you will be pleased to know that you may be eligible to obtain a 10 per cent mortgage loan insurance premium refund through Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) under the CMHC Green Home Program.
There are two ways to obtain this premium refund: if you buy a home that is already energy efficient, or if you make energy efficient renovations to your home. In both cases, you would have to use CMHC insured financing to be eligible.
If you are buying a home, all homes in Nova Scotia that are certified under the R-2000 Program or that have an Energuide® rating of 80 or above on the Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) scale are eligible for this refund.
Energy-efficient condominiums are also eligible. For a condo to be qualified, the building in which the unit is located must be 25 per cent more energy efficient than if constructed to meet the requirements of the Model National Energy Code of Buildings (MNECB), and must have been built on, or after July 27, 2005.
If you are planning on doing energy -efficient renovations to your existing home there are a few steps for you to follow in order to obtain this refund. The first step is to obtain an energy rating. An NRCan qualified energy advisor will evaluate your house to
determine its energy efficiency rating on a scale of 0 to 100. It must rate at least 40 points on the NRCan energy scale in order to be eligible. To learn more about the NRCan energy scale and to get in touch with an NRCan advisor, visit www.nrcan.gc.ca.
Your second step will be to discuss CMHC-insured financing with your mortgage professional or your financial institution. He or she will examine the benefits and options that are available to you through CMHC loan insurance.
Your third step is to improve your energy efficiency rating. Renovate or upgrade your home to increase its energy rating by implementing your energy advisor’s recommendations. You will not only benefit financially by lessening your energy payments each month, but you will also have peace of mind in knowing that you are doing your part for the environment.
After you have made required renovations, your fourth step is to confirm your improvements. At this point your energy advisor will come back to your house and assess it once again. If the test shows that your home’s energy rating has improved by at least five points and has achieved an overall rating of at least 40, you can then apply for the refund. You can find the CMHC Energy-Efficient Premium Refund Form by visiting www.cmhc.ca and searching keywords “energy
efficient premium refund form.”
After reading this article you may be left wondering “what exactly does a 10% saving add up to in dollars and cents?” Well, if you have obtained CMHC insured financing to buy a $300,000 energy efficient home with a 5% down payment, the 10% refund would be over $780.
So, whether you’re a current or future homeowner, it is worth your while to explore the possibility of receiving the CMHC mortgage loan insurance premium refund. Your bank account will thank you, your house will thank you and best of all, the environment will thank you. For more ways to reduce your energy consumption, visit www.cmhc.ca and search “my energy savings.”