Better Homes 2019/2021

Phase 1 Results

The City of Charlottetown and efficiencyPEI partnered to develop a neighbourhood-level energy efficiency engagement program tailored to suit residents of the municipality of Charlottetown in Prince Edward Island. A key motivation for the program was an observation by municipal and provincial government staff that although many residents were aware of efficiencyPEI and the home energy rebates available to them, many were still experiencing barriers to navigating and participating in those programs. The Better Homes Neighbourhood Energy Project (BHNEP) was an opportunity to establish a two-way communication channel with homeowners to help government staff better understand what the barriers were and to provide information and assistance to optimize their energy upgrades.

Project Intentions:

  • Reduce barriers & enhance motivations to participate in existing energy efficiency programs
  • Educate and engage Charlottetown residents on the topic of home energy efficiency
  • Build community around a shared goal of creating a more sustainable neighbourhood
  • Create a scalable and reproduceable neighborhood engagement project model
  • Work toward Charlottetown Community Energy Plan objectives. Specifically, “To significantly improve energy efficiency in buildings” with a specific goal within that objective of “Increasing collaboration with efficiencyPEI and the Province of PEI to encourage incentives for GHG reduction measures and technologies”

This program was first launched in fall 2019 and was open to residents in the Sherwood neighbourhood. A second round was launched in fall 2021 that took place in a subsection of Charlottetown's downtown core.

Participants in the project received:

  • A free home energy audit
  • A one-on-one consultation with an energy consultant to review options for improving the efficiency of their home, helping to reduce energy costs, and helping participants learn more about energy saving opportunities
  • Free energy upgrades (air sealing, a low-flow shower head, LED light bulbs, a programmable thermostat, and a voucher for a heating system cleaning)


Due to a lag in contracting services as well as changes in behavior patterns associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, it will take many years to fully understand the cost savings and greenhouse gas emission reductions associated with this project. However, the preliminary data from the first round of the Better Homes Neighbourhood Energy Project is promising.


We found that, at the time of the final report for the Sherwood Better Homes Neighbourhood Energy Project:

  • 44% of project participants had completed home energy efficient upgrades at the time of the final report. This corresponded to the disbursement of $45,153 in energy rebates from efficiency PEI.
  • Households who participated in the Better Homes Neighbourhood Energy Project were 2X more likely to access efficiencyPEI’s home energy efficiency programs in comparison to households who did not participate in the project.
  • Participants in the Better Homes Neighbourhood Energy Project were 4X more likely than non-participants to access efficiencyPEI’s Home Insulation Rebates and improve their homes overall energy efficiency.
  • Following the completion of the program, there was a 60% increase in participants reporting a high level of energy efficiency knowledge compared to before the project took place.


Click here to see the complete project results from round one of the Better Homes Neighbourhood Energy Project that took place in the Sherwood neighbourhood of Charlottetown.

Graph of Better Homes phase 1 results