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Understanding the EnerGuide Ratings (Natural Resources Canada)

It all begins with personal home energy consumption

Every home consumes energy daily throughout the year. For the most part, a utility bill will show how much natural gas or electricity is being consumed every month. What’s more important is to understand how the energy is actually being consumed. Understanding usage patterns helps the homeowner to better conserve energy and therefore save on energy costs. This is exactly where the EnerGuide Rating System can be of value – it’s Step One in understanding personal energy consumption, and a turning point for making changes. A home’s “rating” summarizes the energy efficiency of the home, and identifies areas where efficiencies can be dramatically improved.

Interpreting the scores of a home’s EnerGuide Rating

Only Certified Energy Auditors can expedite EnerGuide Ratings. They are recognized by Natural Resources Canada, and should not be confused with “door-to-door” contractors who might claim to represent EnerGuide or Energy Star®. The current EnerGuide Rating System rates the home from 0 - 100, with a higher rating signifying higher energy efficiency. For example, a newly built home (built to code) could well have a rating score of 65+. Homes that have had energy efficiency improvements could have a score of 70+. Understandably, many older homes could score below the 65 rating – these are the homes that could benefit from retrofits to boost their efficiencies.

There’s a new version of the EnerGuide Rating System

Energy conservation initiatives are ever changing, and home energy efficiency is taking more and more priority. Hence, the newest iteration of the EnerGuide Rating System (Version 15) offers new opportunities for homeowners to make improvements. The new system allows for homes to be compared with one another, so that energy usage can be paralleled. Rating scores are also new – instead of the 0-100 rating the new approach defines total energy consumed throughout a year. Here, the lower the defined rating, the more energy efficient a home is. This new system will also allow homeowners to calculate precisely how much is spent on energy throughout the year.

The EnerGuide Rating System sets the stage for a “game plan” – a plan to measurably improve the energy efficiency in a home, therefore consuming less energy, and saving money on utilities. Importantly, homeowners can identify areas where energy is being unnecessarily wasted. This will allow for energy upgrades to be implemented, and problem areas to be resolved. In 2019, all homes will require the new EnerGuide Rating prior to being listed for sale. This is where a good rating can potentially add real estate value to a home. Better still, the new EnerGuide Ratings will make for generally higher standards for buyers and sellers, realtors and homebuilders.

It’s now time for homeowners to have an action plan

There are various upgrades/retrofits that homeowners can implement in a concerted effort to improve home energy efficiency. At Great Northern Insulation, home energy experts specialize in a wide range of improvements - everything from air sealing, to weatherizing, to high performance insulation. GNI starts with a Home Energy Audit, continues with an assessment of deficiencies, and provides high quality product solutions and superior installation work.

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