Low-Cost Way To Make Home More Energy Efficient

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Low-Cost Way To Make Home More Energy Efficient

CREATED Jun. 20, 2012 - UPDATED: Jun. 21, 2012

Better Buildings for Michigan and Michigan Energy Options have partnered with Dewitt and Bath Township to give homeowners an unprecedented opportunity to make energy efficient improvements to their homes. They say a little investment now can go a long way.

If a home is losing air, it affects not just the utility bills, but the level of comfort as well. That's why Jack Bails signed up for a professional energy assessment with the Better Buildings for Michigan initiative.

"Primarily for comfort, but also interest in saving energy," said Bails, who lives in Bath Township. "Taking personal responsibility to do that."

A typical home energy audit can cost up to $500, but Dewitt and Bath Township residents can get an assessment for just $50 until July 31st.

"That visit will uncover and prioritize what steps you should take to improve the energy efficiency of your home, should you choose to move forward," said David Meeder with Michigan Energy Options.

Jack Bails chose to move forward with several energy efficient recommendations, including putting air sealing in the attic and basement, adding insulation, and installing a new air conditioning unit.

"We probably will save money in the long term and increase the comfort of the whole house," Bails said.

Steve Musselman, a Dewitt Township trustee, says residents could experience a 10 to 50 percent change in energy bills by taking advantage of the recommendations following the audit.

Considering the audit's lowered cost, and the possibility of other utility rebates, organizers say signing up for an assessment is a "no-brainer."

"First, for the resident it's a way to save money because it's going to reduce energy bills," said Musselman. "Secondly, it's a renewable resource we need to protect."

The $50 home energy assessment for Bath and Dewitt Township residents also comes with the installation of energy-saving equipment like a programmable thermostat and low-flow shower heads. 240 homeowners can participate in the program, and only about 100 of slots those have been taken.

If you live in Bath or Dewitt township, visit http://bathbbfm.org/.

If you don't live in Bath or Dewitt Township, experts say even paying full price for a professional energy assessment is a good idea.

There are also other other savings programs homeowners can take advantage of. For example, Consumers Energy customers with residential rate service are eligible for up to $5,000 in rebates for measures installed to save energy. The Lansing Board of Water and Light also offers rebates and incentives for making energy efficient investments. So before you get any work done on your home, contact both of those companies to see what rebates you're eligible for.

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