Five Percent: Conserve Energy

Climate Change Is Important: Energy Conservation is the First Step

May 22, 2009

75% Credit for Insulating, from National Grid

Category: Companies,Cool Sites,Energy Audit,Household,Tips – Tom Harrison – 5:40 pm

new_insulationTo make a longer story short: our utility, NationalGrid is currently offering rebates for energy efficiency improvements. I will save $1,889, or 75% of the cost of fixing the insulation in our house. Other credits are available. Work must be done by July 31st. Update: as of August, the program has been extended. Here’s the special NationalGrid web site which provides the details.

After our energy audit, I started thinking about how I would get the things I needed done. I really didn’t know who should do the work, but I got a lead from the man who did our audit. His reference turned out to be a company that was defunct (or something), however I found this through searching the name he provided. The site I came across was called Service Magic, and they provide a referral service for contractors. I explained what I wanted, and they referred me to HomeWorks Energy, an insulation contractor in the Boston area. I called them, and Scott, the owner, told me that not only could he do the work, but that there was a great deal for NationalGrid gas customers doing insulating project using approved contractors in Massachusetts until the end of July — 75% off, up to $2,000.

(This kind of stuff never happens in real life, does it?)

But I checked it out, and it’s the real thing. Scott came over on Tuesday, and using the infrared photos taken last week, was able to provide an estimate for the work needed. The estimate includes numerous items — many are items missed by the first contractor we hired years back, others are AIR leaks identified in the audit, and more work will bring our attic closer to the level of insulation it should really have. The total cost: $2,519, of which I’ll pay only $630 in the end. Not to mention a possible federal tax credit.

I was lucky to find this deal. Trust me, while NationalGrid is doing a great thing indeed, they do not appear to be exactly anxious to give away thousands of dollars — the site with the discount information is entirely different than their normal site with nary a reference I could find. But it was there. So I thought I would share my general strategy for locating the various incentives that apply, at least here in Massachusetts.

It turns out that I can get a $300 discount for upgrading my hot water heater, and there are a few other potentially interesting rebates and incentives involving energy conservation. You paid your taxes, right — now get back the part that will make the world a greener place!

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