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Multi-Unit Residential Buildings (MURBs)

For the Canada Greener Homes Grant, a low-rise MURB is defined based on Part  9 of the National Building Code of Canada as having three or fewer storeys in building height and having a building area not exceeding 600 m2. MURBs must either be stacked (up/down) or have a common area. Retirement homes and townhouses are not MURBs.

MURBs over three storeys or over 600 m2 in footprint are not eligible.

Additional eligibility criteria for MURBs

Homeowners living in a low-rise MURB must ensure they meet all eligibility requirements for the Canada Greener Homes Grant in addition to the following requirements: 

  • A single EnerGuide evaluation is undertaken for the entire structure (or address) and not on a unit-by-unit basis. Homeowners within the MURB need to organize themselves (e.g., by way of a condo board or other means) in such a way that all homeowners are aware that the evaluation will be taking place.
  • Retrofits in a MURB must be agreed to by the person or persons able to make decisions about the renovations to the building.
  • For MURBs that are owned by one person and of which the remaining units are rented, the owner must live within the building as their primary residence. The maximum amount of incentive that can be given in this case is $5,000.
  • The MURB must have at least 50% of its total area, including the basement, as a residential living space.
  • The building must be habitable all year.

Low-rise MURBs are not eligible if the air tightness test can not be performed during the energy evaluation of the home.

Applying for reimbursement as a MURB

Individual homeowners within the low-rise MURB must apply for individual grants of up to $5,000 based on the single EnerGuide evaluation undertaken for the entire structure.

The maximum amount that a MURB structure can receive is $20,000.

Calculating incentives

The maximum allowable amount for building envelope measures— adding insulation and air sealing— in MURBs will be calculated based on the number of units within the building. The table below provides the multiplier amount. 

Number of dwelling units per MURB 2–3 4–6 7–9 10–12 13–16 17+
MURB Multiplier 1.0 1.5 2.0 2.5 3.0 4.0

The role of the multiplier factor is to account for larger areas to insulate or renovate when comparing an MURB to a single dwelling. Eligibility criteria for respective insulation measures remain the same as described in the list of incentive measures (for example, insulating a minimum of 20% of the total area of the attic/ceiling). As for regular homes, MURBS can not be reimbursed for more than 100% of the costs of the renovation.

The MURB multiplier determines the maximum grant amount for the MURB’s entire building, based on the number of units.
Examples:
Maximum grant for a 3-unit building is $5000 x MURB multiplier 1 = $5,000.
Maximum grant for a 4-unit building is $5000 x MURB multiplier 1.5 = $7,500.
Maximum grant for a 15-unit building is $5000 x MURB multiplier 3 = $15,000.
Maximum grant for an 18-unit building is $5000 x MURB multiplier 4 = $20,000.

The MURB multiplier also determines the maximum number of homeowners living in the building as their primary residence that can apply in order to reach the maximum eligible grant.

Note that for low-rise MURBs that are owned by one person and of which the remaining units are rented, the owner must live within the building as their primary residence. The maximum incentive that can be given in this case is $5,000 as there is only one homeowner residing in the building.

The windows and doors grants are calculated on a rough opening basis. A rough opening is the structural framing in a wall separating a heated space from an unheated space that creates an opening for the installation of a window or door. For example, a bay window with three window units installed into one rough opening is eligible for only one grant.

The MURB multiplier does not apply to windows, doors or solar panels, but it is possible to get reimbursed for more windows, doors and solar panels through the higher grant amount applicable to the entire building. The multiplier can be applied to the grant amount for:

  • MURB insulation
  • Air sealing
  • Resiliency measures

MURBs are not eligible for:

  • Heat pumps or domestic water heaters (including in northern and off-grid communities)
  • Thermostats

Here are some examples of grant calculations:

Example 1: a MURB comprising nine units and wanting to claim amounts for both attic and exposed floor insulation would be calculated as follows:
(attic maximum $1,800 x MURB multiplier 2.0 = $3,600) + (exposed floor $350 x MURB multiplier 2.0 = $700) = $4,300. As this amount is below $5,000, it can be claimed by one homeowner or divided between two homeowners as this is a nine-unit MURB .

Example 2: a MURB comprising four units and wanting to claim amounts for 3 ENERGY STAR windows and exposed floor insulation would be calculated as follows:
(3 ENERGY STAR windows x $125 per rough opening = $375, no MURB grant multiplier on windows) + (exposed floor $350 x MURB multiplier 1.5 = $525) = $900. As this amount is below $5,000, it can be claimed by one homeowner or divided between two homeowners as this is a four-unit MURB .

Example 3: a MURB comprising 15 units wanting to claim amounts for 25 ENERGY STAR most efficient windows, air sealing, basement header and air source heat pumps (ASHP) would be calculated as follows:
(25 ENERGY STAR most efficient windows x $250 per rough opening = $6,250, no MURB grant multiplier on windows) + (air sealing for 10% better than target $810 x MURB multiplier 3.0 = $2,430) + (basement header $240 x MURB multiplier 3.0 = $720) + (ASHP not eligible for MURBs = $0) = $9,400. This amount must be divided and can be claimed by at least two homeowners as it is above the maximum of $5,000 for one homeowner.

Example 4: a MURB comprising 15 units and wanting to claim amounts for 20 ENERGY STAR most efficient windows, air sealing and insulation of 100% of the exterior wall area would be calculated as follows:
(20 ENERGY STAR most efficient windows x $250 per rough opening = $5,000, no grant multiplier) + (air sealing maximum $1,000 x 3.0 = $3,000) + (exterior wall insulation $5,000 x 3.0 = $15,000) = $23,000 that will be capped at $15,000 based on the number of units (15) and the multiplier. In this case, the amount would need to be divided and claimed by three homeowners.

Example 5: a MURB comprising 8 units and wanting to claim amounts for a 13 kW photovoltaic system would be calculated as follows:
(13 kW Photovoltaic system x $1,000 = $13,000, no grant multiplier on photovoltaic systems) that will be capped at $10,000 as this is based on a maximum incentive of $5,000 x MURB multiplier 2.0 = $10,000. As this amount is above $5,000, it will need to be claimed by two homeowners for this is an eight-unit MURB .

Find out how much is available for your planned retrofits

MURBS can apply the multiplier to:

  • MURB insulation
  • Air sealing
  • Resiliency measures

See grant table for each MURB multiplier

MURBS are not eligible for:

  • Heat pumps or domestic water heaters (including in northern and off-grid communities) as the equipment on the eligible products list are not suitable for space heating in larger buildings
  • Thermostats

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