Victoria, Saanich launch incentive program for rental building electrification

Victoria, Saanich launch incentive program for rental building electrification
Nicholas Pescod
Victoria city hall is pictured in this file photo.

The municipalities of Victoria and Saanich have teamed up with Landlord BC and BC Hydro to offer incentives for rental building owners to retrofit their buildings to improve energy efficiency.

On Wednesday, the two communities announced that they had joined the “Rental Apartment Retrofit Accelerator (RARA) Program,” which launched in Vancouver last year.

Through the program, owners of rental buildings in Victoria and Saanich can work with Landlord BC to put together a business case for electrification upgrades.

Then, the building owners can go to the City of Victoria or District of Saanich and apply for tax exemptions to construct the retrofit projects, which in some cases can “cover up to 100 per cent of eligible costs.”

To learn more about each municipality’s RARA programs, visit the City of Victoria website or District of Saanich website.

“This is an investment in meaningful climate action and in improving housing for renters,” said Saanich Mayor Dean Murdock in a release Wednesday.

“Upgrading our rental stock through low-carbon retrofits helps extend the life of these buildings for the people who live there, and in many cases, will benefit renters by providing access to summer cooling,” he said.

The RARA program is funded through CleanBC and BC Hydro, while LandlordBC helps rental building owners navigate the process.

The City of Victoria and District of Saaniich say the program will help them meet their goal of having 100 per cent renewable energy usage in all buildings by 2050.

SEE ALSO: B.C., Ottawa contribute to $8.7M fund for hundreds of EV charging ports in Greater Victoria

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