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<< - TD Canada Trust releases 3rd Green Home Poll - - 82% of Ontarians who are willing to pay a premium on an environmentally friendly home say cost savings is a main motivation - 70% of Ontarians are more likely to undergo a green home renovation if they benefit from tax credits >>

TORONTO, March 30 /CNW/ - Ontario home owners are willing to pay more now for an environmentally friendly home if it will save them money down the road. According to the TD Canada Trust Green Home Poll, 76% of Ontarians would be willing to pay more for a house or condo that includes environmentally friendly features.

The main draw? Saving money

Ontarians who are willing to pay a premium on environmentally friendly homes are the most likely, compared with the rest of the country, to say that cost savings on energy bills is a main motivation (82% versus 77% nationally). Ontarians who are willing to pay more for environmentally friendly homes also appreciate the added features of a green home such as the health benefits (50%) and reducing their environmental impact (50%).

"This is the third year that Ontarians have told us that they will pay more for a home with environmentally friendly features and as more and more homes are being built with green features included, the housing industry is making it easier for home buyers to find environmentally friendly options," says Chris Wisniewski, AVP, Real Estate Secured Lending, TD Canada Trust.

Upgrading to a green home popular with home owners in Ontario, but more education needed

Environmentally friendly home renovations and upgrades are popular with Ontarians, and this popularity may grow as people learn more about them. Twenty-nine per cent of Ontarians have done a green home renovation or are planning to do one in the future, and another 32% would like to carry out a green home renovation but don't know where to start. TD Canada Trust makes it a little easier for home owners to find information about green home renovations and upgrades by offering links on their website ( to several organizations such as Natural Resources Canada and other agencies.

In addition, government incentives such as the Ontario Home Energy Savings Program, or the federal government's ecoENERGY program, which offers grants for residential energy saving improvements(1), encourage Ontarians to make changes. Sixty-two per cent of Ontarians are interested in participating in an energy saving program and 15% are already participating in a program. More than two-thirds (70%) of home owners from Ontario say they are more likely to make energy efficient upgrades if they benefit from tax credits. Sixty-four per cent of Ontarians are likely to consider an environmental assessment prior to home renovations.

"Environmentally friendly choices can benefit the health of our families - including our financial health - and it can be easy to take advantage of them," says Wisniewski. "With Earth Day® right around the corner, it's the perfect time for Ontario home owners to assess how green their homes are and make some positive changes."

Greener living begins at home

More than nine in ten Ontarians (93%) choose environmentally-friendly home maintenance options. For example, Ontario home owners avoid pesticide use (63%), dispose of chemical products at the appropriate disposal centre (59%) and buy household care products in bulk or concentrated form (48%). Upgrading existing features, such as replacing regular light bulbs with CFL light bulbs (57%) and replacing or upgrading windows (42%) top the list of home improvements home owners have already undertaken or are planning to undertake in the next 12 months. Other improvements popular with Ontarians include applying weather-stripping and caulking to stop drafts (38%), changing lighting fixtures to accommodate low wattage lighting (32%) and replacing kitchen appliances with more energy-efficient models (31%).

About TD Canada Trust green home products

TD Canada Trust has two ways that customers can save money and help protect the environment, the Green Mortgage and the Green Home Equity Line of Credit (HELOC). Both products offer a lower interest rate and rebates on certain purchases, while giving back to the environment. As well, when customers receive their rebate, TD Canada Trust donates $100 to the TD Friends of the Environment Foundation.

About the TD Canada Trust Green Home Poll

The TD Canada Trust Green Home Poll surveyed adult Canadians from across the country who own a home or are considering purchasing a home in the next 12 months, to explore the relationship between the environment and home purchase or home renovations. The survey was conducted by Angus Reid Public Opinion, a division of Vision Critical, on March 12, 2010 with English and French speaking Canadians 18+. The sample size includes 1,494 men and women, including 558 Ontarians.

About TD Bank Financial Group

The Toronto-Dominion Bank and its subsidiaries are collectively known as TD Bank Financial Group. TD Bank Financial Group is the sixth largest bank in North America by branches and serves more than 18 million customers in four key businesses operating in a number of locations in key financial centres around the globe: Canadian Personal and Commercial Banking, including TD Canada Trust and TD Insurance; Wealth Management, including TD Waterhouse and an investment in TD Ameritrade; U.S. Personal and Commercial Banking, including TD Bank, America's Most Convenient Bank; and Wholesale Banking, including TD Securities. TD Bank Financial Group also ranks among the world's leading online financial services firms, with more than 6 million online customers. TD Bank Financial Group had CDN$567 billion in assets on January 31, 2010. The Toronto-Dominion Bank trades under the symbol "TD" on the Toronto and New York Stock Exchanges.

Earth Day® is a trade-mark of Earth Day Canada (1991) Inc., used with the permission of Earth Day Canada (1991) Inc.

<< -------------------------------------- (1) "ecoENERGY Retrofit Homes Grants." Natural Resources Canada. >>

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