6 steps to becoming an energy advisor in Ontario

Published on September 30, 2021


Interested in a career or a part-time gig that lets you be your own boss? Right now, there's a huge demand for energy advisors. It’s being driven by the Canada Greener Homes Grant, which offers up to $5,000 for energy-efficient retrofits and up to $600 for an EnerGuide home energy evaluation, and the Home Efficiency Rebate program, which gives homeowners up to $5,000 to improve their home’s efficiency.

These programs are incredibly popular with homeowners, and there aren’t enough energy advisors to meet demand.

“Homeowners are waiting weeks for an evaluation”, says John Plumstead, Service Manager at Barrier Sciences Group. “We're looking for advisors all over Ontario, from Ottawa to the GTA to Niagara. There's a ton of work. The job can be full-time, but is also great for someone looking to supplement their income on evenings and weekends.”


Intrigued? Here are the 6 steps to becoming an accredited energy advisor in Ontario

1. Pass the foundation-level NRCan exam

This 150-question, 3-hour multiple choice exam tests a wide range of building science knowledge. It has a strong math component, and focuses on construction and renovation, workplace safety, HVAC, building envelope and building science principles: all the elements that influence energy performance.


2. Pass the EnerGuide energy advisor exam

This is another 150-question exam over 3 hours. It's focused on the EnerGuide rating system, on the operation of their modelling software, on the delivery of EnerGuide, and on ensuring you help homeowners understand the rebate programs and how they can operate their homes more sustainably.


Don't have the knowledge you need to jump right into the exams? There are lots of places that offer exam prep courses: check CIET or Blue House Energy.


3. Become affiliated with a service service organization (like BSG)

To do energy audits, you must be affiliated with a service organization that will submit your files to NRCare and allow you to issue EnerGuide labels.


4. Register with NRCan

Once you’ve passed both exams, you'll need to register your results.


5. Complete your probationary files with your service organization

They must be completed to the satisfaction of the service organization. (The number of probationary files can vary.)


6. Provide proof of a criminal record check.

Submit it to your service organization and they’ll send it on to NRCan.

And then you're an energy advisor!

Is being an energy advisor right for me?

An energy advisor is not an employee, but a subcontractor of their service organization who is paid per audit, not per hour. Being an energy advisor could be the right move if you:

  • Want to build your own business without a big initial investment.
  • Have a solid work ethic and an entrepreneurial spirit.
  • Want a steady stream of leads and can take on a minimum of 5 files a month.
  • Want to control your own schedule and workload.
  • Have a background or interest in home construction, engineering and energy efficiency.
  • Can work evenings and weekends (when people are home).

“The more audits you do, the more money you make,” says Plumstead. “A good advisor who's doing a couple of files a day 4 to 5 days a week can make over $100K. At BSG, we’re giving our advisors as many files as they can handle. It's a great opportunity!”

Interested in starting your own business as an energy auditor?

Contact us to ask about requirements, the nature of the work, or for answers to any other questions you may have. Get in touch today! 

The Canada Greener Homes Grant offers home efficiency renovation grants up to $5,000.

Homeowners Canada-wide are eligible for the Canada Greener Homes Grant, announced on May 27, 2021. This new incentive offers up to $5,000 in grants for home efficiency retrofit renovations, plus a $600 reimbursement for pre- and post-work EnerGuide evaluations. Eligible retrofit scopes include home insulation, heating, doors, windows, photovoltaic solar panels, resiliency measures, and thermostats.

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