Sept. 19, 2011: Today Avista announced a reduction in cost to its In-Home Energy Audit pilot program, in which hundreds of area homeowners have already participated. Professional In-Home Energy Audits are now available for as low as $49. These energy audits, valued at more than $400, provide specific recommendations to help Spokane County homeowners make informed decisions about actions they can take to help save energy.
“We hope reducing the price for the energy audits will encourage even more participation in this valuable program,” said Joe Brabeck, Avista’s Energy Audit Program Manager. “We have heard great things from energy audit participants who are pleased with the information, advice and materials these audits provide.”
To date, nearly 700 homeowners have participated in the program. The majority of these homeowners have taken action, based on the energy audit recommendations, to make their homes more energy efficient and thus use less energy. In making energy efficiency improvements, Avista customers have also used several available rebates and incentives, plus access to a loan program to help lower the cost of making any improvements.
Avista has partnered with the cities of Spokane, Spokane Valley, and Spokane County since April 2010 to provide reduced-cost energy audits to qualifying residents living in Spokane County. The three local governments are supporting the audit program with federal funds each received through the Washington Department of Commerce’s Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant program in 2010. Avista provides partial funding as part of its long-standing commitment to energy efficiency.
Under the program, certified auditors conduct a physical inspection of a home and its major appliances. The auditors also perform a series of diagnostic tests to uncover
areas of heat loss or gain. Windows, doors, insulation, furnace, ducts and vents are checked as part of the comprehensive audit. Results and recommendations are provided in a written follow-up report. Homeowners also receive an energy efficiency kit with weatherization items, CFL bulbs and low-flow showerheads.
Depending on the actions homeowners take, the energy audit’s benefits could include lower energy use, more comfortable living space, improved health and safety, and reduced greenhouse gas emissions.
The two-year pilot audit program is expected to end in late 2012. It is designed for single family homes, manufactured or mobile homes, and semi-detached duplex residences located in Spokane County. Some individuals with low or limited incomes may qualify for additional funding help through Spokane Neighborhood Action Partners (SNAP).
The cost range for the audits, $49 to $325, depends on which funding sources the homeowners are eligible to receive. Non-Avista customers can sign up for audits and are eligible for funding through their respective city or county, but are not eligible for Avista energy efficiency funds.
Reduced Cost Loan Program Helps Ease Energy Efficiency Investments
While an In-Home Energy Audit requires an initial investment, the return on that investment could be energy savings every month for as long residents live in their homes. Some energy efficiency investments can be significant, that’s why Avista has developed an energy efficiency loan program offering reduced cost loans to qualified residential and small commercial gas or electric customers of Avista.
Participating lenders include Numerica Credit Union, Spokane Teachers Credit Union, and SNAP Financial Access. Sustainable Resources Inland Northwest is the loan coordinator and acts as a liaison between the customer, the lenders and Avista. For more information about the loan program visit: http://sustainableresourcesinw.org/energy_efficiency_loan_program.html
Avista Corp. is an energy company involved in the production, transmission and distribution of energy as well as other energy-related businesses. Avista Utilities is our operating division that provides electric service to 357,000 customers and natural gas to 317,000 customers. Our service territory covers 30,000 square miles in eastern Washington, northern Idaho and parts of southern and eastern Oregon, with a population of 1.5 million. Avista's primary, non-utility subsidiary is Advantage IQ. Our stock is traded under the ticker symbol "AVA." For more information about Avista, please visit www.avistacorp.com. Avista Corp. and the Avista Corp. logo are trademarks of Avista Corporation.
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