As part of its shift to a low-carbon economy, the Ontario government just released its Five Year Climate Change Action Plan to promote the reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.

What this means for homeowners and buyers, is that before a house can be put on the market it will require an energy audit and rating, which will be paid for by the government.

“Ontarians deserve to know how a home operates when comparing properties to better understand their monthly future payments,” said Jay Nordenstrom, Executive Director of NAIMA Canada. “We have labels for food, gas mileage and medicine, why not homes too?”

In the long run, we will all benefit from this in terms of reducing the impact of climate change and energy consumption, but in the short term, no one will benefit more than homebuyers. It is one thing to shop for houses within your price range, but without knowing the operational costs it is impossible to predict with any accuracy what your monthly expenditures will be.

This will no doubt create many jobs in the energy auditing field (which currently has little hope of meeting such demand), it will also inject life into the construction industry as home upgrades are carried out, encouraging homeowners to take advantage of government-funded renovation and retrofit programs.

“Universal home energy labelling is the single most important tool to increase energy literacy towards a successful climate change strategy,” said Elizabeth MacDonald, CEO of the Canadian Energy Efficiency Alliance.

Beyond helping Ontario and Canada meet its climate change targets, this will save homeowners money on utilities as well as increase the value of homes that take advantage of the assistance offered.

The Home Energy Transparency Coalition applauds the Ontario government for taking a bold step in the fight against climate change.

About the Home Energy Transparency Coalition:

The Home Energy Transparency Coalition comprises the Canadian Energy Efficiency Alliance, Ontario Home Builders Association, Clean Economy Alliance, and NAIMA Canada representing more than 125 organizations.