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Realtors Hot and Cold on Mandatory Energy Audits


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By Shawn Giilck

While many homeowners might be worried and wary of the new "green" home audits being introduced by the province, at least one local real estate broker likes the idea.

The new provincial Green Energy Act will require all new and resale homes to undergo the energy audits at a cost of about $300, half of which is eligible for a provincial rebate, by 2011.

Public reaction to the act, introduced about two weeks, ago, has been extremely mixed. Both homeowners looking to sell and people wishing to buy are wary of being slapped with another fee in this harsh economic climate, since the act doesn't specify who will pay for the audits.

Many are also worried that repairs and retrofits suggested in the audit will be made mandatory, although there is no provision for that yet.

"I can't speak for local realtors as a whole but of those I've spoken to, reaction is mixed both for and against," local realtor Marg Scheben-Edey said in an email interview.

Detractors of the new act, including the Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA), cite several reasons for their opposition, Scheben-Edey said. Their objections include:

To read more in the Collingwood, Ont. Enterprise-Bulletin, click here.

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While I try to be green myself, I am not sold that it should be mandatory for these audits.

If you rent your home you have to get one for your tenant... I do not agree with this. If I own the home, I do it once. Then the only time I should have to do it again is when/if I sell.

I guess the upshot is it gives HI's more revenue. The downside to that is in order to do an effective home energy audit, you need to do a blower door test. Well this equipment costs about $4k. So with good, comes bad.

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