Success Stories From Our Clients

Click on the links below or scroll down to read about the successful home upgrade services other homeowners received from City Green.

 

 

As City Green Clients, you told us you...

Cut your heating bills in half

My energy bills this winter, after doing the renovations, are half what they were at the same time last year.  I have saved money, helped the environment, and have made my house much more comfortable. Read more...

Received excellent, professional service
"We were delighted with our choice to work with City Green. Office staff and our energy advisor were professional, had an excellent understanding of energy efficiency and government programs to support efficient energy management, and offered suggestions in a polite and informative manner. The Better Business Bureau A+ rating and awards received for an excellent company are indeed warranted." David and Linda, Langley

Recommended us to your friends and family
”Our experience with City Green was excellent and we have recommended your service organization to our friends and family who have also had energy assessments with City Green. We were happy with the professional service we received from the office and from our Energy Advisor Zak Cross.”-Claudia, Courtenay BC

Were happy to receive relevant grants and incentives!
“We feel a definite improvement in heat retention (less humidity, warmer floors, no drafts) in our home and believe there has been a small part in greenhouse gas reduction. We have now received a federal rebate cheque for $1005 and Live Smart rebate for $530. That such a service is possible is a real asset to our energy conscious environment.” -Camil and Judith, Victoria

Received helpful advice for improving home comfort  

I want to personally thank you and everyone at City Green Solutions for your professional service. Your company made this process very efficient, informative and positive for me and my family. Not to mention cozy, too! -Ian and Alexis

Learned how to reduce heat loss
“It makes us feel better that we’re not wasting,” says Toivo. “We’ve got a much more comfortable home, less drafty, less moisture…a warmer house. What’s good for the world ends up being good for you.”
Read more...

Received customized solutions for your home
"Our biggest problem was that our walls weren't insulated. It would be a 25% improvement to have them done," says Stephanie. "City Green pointed out that our fireplace didn't have a damper, and that the easiest and least expensive solution was to place a piece of wood to cover the hole." Stephanie says, "A lot of problems can simply be remedied with caulking. A 15% improvement can be made just around air leakage."  
Read more...

Learned from knowledgable, professional Energy Advisors
On the day of our assessment, our Energy Advisor, Wendy, was prompt and very courteous. She also turned out to be quite knowledgeable on the subject of building construction and energy efficiency. Wendy was exceedingly thorough in inspecting the entire house as well as patient in responding to all of my questions.
Read more...

Appreciated the cost effective advice and report
“I’d recommend the City Green energy efficiency program to anybody. I think it’s a great deal financially and also good for the environment. It seems like a really good local project.”
Read more...

Appreciated that we handled the paperwork
"We appreciate that you completed all the paperwork required for submission to receive our grants. We have always received professional and courteous assistance from everyone. We sincerely appreciate your efforts on our behalf. We will not hesitate to contact you in the future if the need arises, and will definitely recommend you to co-workers, friends and family.” Janice, Victoria.

Were glad to have confirmation that contractor upgrades increased your home's energy efficiency
"Not being an expert, I couldn't tell whether the repair work had been done well or not," states Joan. Our Energy Advisor came back, inspected the house, conducted a depressurization test, upgraded our EnerGuide for Houses rating and applied for the grants on our behalf. The follow-up visit also confirmed that the work had been done properly.
Read more...


My energy bills are half what they were last year

"My initial home energy assessment revealed that air was passing unhindered in and out of the house through tongue-and-groove wooden ceilings, which had been installed long before, without any kind of air barrier.  I removed the thin layer of fibreglass insulation to parts of the house with plaster ceilings, effectively doubling the R value by stacking onto existing insulation batts.  I then had icynene foam insulation blown into all areas with wooden ceilings, creating an instant air barrier which filled every nook and cranny in the attic, and held the warm air inside the house.  I also installed several new programable thermostats, which maintain lowered temperatures while I am out during the day or asleep at night.  They warm the house just before I get up in the morning, and when I expect to be home at the end of the work day.  In addition, I replaced a number of single paned windows with low-e double paned windows.

My energy bills this winter, after doing the renovations, are half what they were at the same time last year.  I have saved money, helped the environment, and have made my house much more comfortable."
Tannice, Salt Spring Island


A more comfortable home...


Toivo sits in his living room facing a large bay window overlooking the Gorge waterway. The air in the room is warm and still and the water is mesmerizing. A wobbly formation of Goldeneye birds swoops and splashes to a landing while a Cormorant suns itself, wings outstretched.

Six months ago, the drafts through the single-paned window made it too uncomfortable to enjoy this peaceful place in Toivo’s home. The same was true of Toivo’s home office on the first floor below.

Lack of insulation in the walls and single-paned sliding doors caused room temperatures to fluctuate dramatically. Heat-loss and the rise in oil prices translated into high-energy bills.

“We knew this was an inefficient home when we bought it,” says Toivo, “but we loved the location.”

Toivo chose a home surrounded by natural beauty that was close enough to Victoria to avoid a long commute. Living with the environment in mind, Toivo is able to ride a bike or walk when heading out for groceries or doing other errands. Home energy efficiency was the next logical step in making sustainable lifestyle choices.

So, Toivo called Wendy Smith, Certified Energy Advisor working with City Green. Wendy Smith helped Toivo identify and prioritize heat-loss areas in his home. Using his individualized retrofit report, Toivo then focussed his renovation dollars on the most inefficient zones of his home.

“City Green showed us how to save energy and do our part for climate change. We upgraded our old single-pane windows, added insulation to our basement and replaced our home’s hollow front door with a solid one,” said Toivo Suurkask. “Now that the drafts are gone, our home is much more comfortable.”

Better still, Toivo received a cheque for $479 from the federal government through the EnerGuide for Houses program, a reward for upgrading his home. As part of its Kyoto plan, the federal government’s One Tonne Challenge calls upon individual Canadians to reduce their personal share of greenhouse gas emissions by one fifth, or about one tonne.

Home upgrades can easily reduce a home’s annual greenhouse gas emissions by 2.2 tonnes. With help from City Green, the Suurkasks are already doing their part.

“It makes us feel better that we’re not wasting,” says Toivo. “We’ve got a much more comfortable home, less drafty, less moisture…a warmer house. What’s good for the world ends up being good for you.”

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Warmth and savings...



Nestled amongst the giant oak trees of Victoria’s Hillside-Quadra area, Valerie sits with her cat in the sitting room of her eighty-two year old home. The room overlooks her backyard where she grows herbs and vegetables; she likes starting mornings here now that the room is comfortable.

She couldn't say that last year. Her house was too cold.  

"I used to have to bundle up with blankets just to sit in this room. It felt so drafty all the time,” she says.

Valerie learned of the homeowner retrofit grants  program in a community newspaper. She read that customers receive a home visit, an individualized retrofit plan, and may become eligible for federal retrofit grants of up to $5000. Initiated by Natural Resources Canada to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, the program is conducted by licensed organizations such as City Green.

"I was interested in City Green’s evaluation from both a financial perspective and also energy conservation. I just felt that I was heating a lot and losing a lot.”

Valerie called City Green and made an appointment with a Certified Energy Advisor. During the visit, the Advisor did a blower door test to check for air leakage. When the Advisor engaged the large fan, the draft from air leaking into the home was so strong that a piece of styrofoam flew across the room! Air drew in through both the chimney and tiny cracks in the walls.

“Just the fact that the draft would be coming through something that small surprised me. I thought it might come through the bigger holes, but not the small ones."

City Green's final report listed a set of recommendations to prevent heat loss in Valerie’s home. One suggestion was to place a “bladder” – a bag filled with insulation – up the chimney. There were other issues as well. The crawl space, exterior walls and attic were poorly insulated. Every home that undergoes an EnerGuide for Houses evaluation receives an EnerGuide rating – a number between 1 and 100. This number summarizes the total energy efficiency of the home’s windows, doors, insulation, heating and ventilation systems.

The average score of a pre-1980 home is 62. Valerie’s house received a 31. She spent close to $3000 on the suggested renovations and the process took three days. When she arranged a follow-up consultation, the drafts were gone and the house had improved its heat retention so much that it now scored an EnerGuide rating of 62. This point increase resulted in a federal grant of over $1300 through the EnerGuide program.

Valerie isn’t losing heat anymore. She feels more knowledgeable about the unseen areas of her house and she’s saving money on her energy costs.

“I’d recommend the City Green energy efficiency program to anybody. I think it’s a great deal financially and also good for the environment. It seems like a really good local project.”

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Help for character homes...

“My wife and I own a turn of the century 'Character' (read: drafty and uninsulated) home in Victoria," says Craig. When we heard about the EnerGuide program last fall we called to book our appointment with City Green. They were flexible with dates and were able to accommodate our request for a weekend appointment. On the day of our assessment, Wendy, our Energy Advisor, was prompt and very courteous. She also turned out to be quite knowledgeable on the subject of building construction and energy efficiency.

Wendy was exceedingly thorough in inspecting the entire house as well as patient in responding to all of my questions. Not only was Wendy helpful and professional during the actual inspection, but she has also entertained calls from myself after the fact, asking for more details or clarification on issues I am working on.

Wendy's enthusiasm and helpful nature have inspired us to tackle a large number of the recommended upgrades (there are plenty) this year and we hope to have a more comfortable house (and healthy rebate) this time next year.”

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No more cold floors....

Joan owns a home which was built in 1955, and has lived in it for 30 years. "City Green strongly suggested having our basement insulated," says Joan. She followed City Green’s suggestions and had some work done to her home. She had her crawlspace and insulation brought up to current standards.

"The house is more comfortable now with the repairs," says Joan. "Before we only had a paper barrier for insulation. Hydro was much too expensive to run at a comfortable temperature all the time." In total her retrofit bill came to $2002.00. "I put weather stripping around the door myself," she adds.   After the work was completed, Reid decided to take advantage of the follow up assessment.

"Not being an expert, I couldn't tell whether the repair work had been done well or not," states Joan. Our Advisor came back, inspected the house, conducted a depressurization test,  upgraded our EnerGuide for Houses rating and applied for the grants on our behalf. The follow-up visit also confirmed for me that the work had been done properly.  

Joan is satisfied with the improved comfort of her home, as it no longer has cold floors or hard to heat rooms. She plans on living in her home for many more years, and looks forward to the savings she will have on her home heating costs.

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Reducing my climate footprint...

"I want to make my own Kyoto commitment," says Stephanie, a Climate Change Consultant and a client of City Green.  Stephanie, who lives in a 1912 Arts and Crafts style house, says, "Older houses have a lot of energy efficiency improvement possibilities." After reading City Green's brochure, Stephanie decided to give them a call.

As a climate change consultant, Stephanie is environmentally conscious, and also wanted to lower her heating costs.   "I felt a huge draft coming from where the walls meet the foundation," says Stephanie. "It was amazing, all the small places that I could feel a draft coming from...the fireplace had an enormous billow of air coming out of it."

In total, City Green showed that Stephanie's' home had a gigantic energy "hole" of 620 square inches!   "Our biggest problem was that our walls weren't insulated. It would be a 25% improvement to have them done," says Stephanie. "City Green pointed out that our fireplace didn't have a damper, and that the easiest and least expensive solution was to place a piece of wood to cover the hole." Stephanie says, "A lot of problems can simply be remedied with caulking. A 15% improvement can be made just around air leakage."  

Stephanie plans on phasing her repairs over the next few years.   "We thought that the cost of the visit was money well spent. City Green gave us some really good advice and ideas on how to improve some things. It's a really good service, which was done extremely efficiently,” raves Stephanie. "I've recommended City Green to a lot of people. I think it's a really valuable and worthwhile."