One of the many things new homeowners learn is the considerable impact improvements, maintenance and energy in your home can have on your budget. That is what Nikki Bentley and her husband Jeffrey discovered after they purchased their first home, a 1954 rambler, a few years back.
Nikki and Jeffrey are environmentally-conscious and want to limit their impact on the environment, which also aligns with their goal to limit the impact energy has on their budget. As they make improvements to their home and replace aging mechanical systems and appliances, they have set their sights on making their new home more energy efficient. Nikki says this has taken a lot of additional education, and she has consulted everyone and everything from family members and their HVAC specialist to YouTube. This desire to learn is what led Nikki to attend a CUB energy consultation a few months ago. Nikki met with CUB’s Outreach Director Carmen Carruthers during a utility bill clinic held at her workplace, Thomson Reuters.
One upgrade that Nikki and Jeffrey had already completed before the CUB consultation was replacing their old boiler for a newer, energy efficient model. Not only does the newer model save them money on energy costs, Carmen made Nikki aware of a $400 rebate for the boiler available from their gas utility, Xcel Energy. When purchasing new appliances or mechanical systems for your home, it is always beneficial to check out your utility’s website for available rebates.
Nikki and Jeffrey are working through their list of energy saving projects. Some are easy such as replacing their light bulbs with LED bulbs. Some projects will be more involved and more expensive such as adding more insultation. While many of the needed improvements are obvious, they plan to have an energy audit this fall to get a full picture of all the opportunities to improve their home’s comfort and make it more energy efficient. As new, young homeowners with student loans, they’ve decided that they will need get creative to save energy and will try to do many of these home projects themselves. One project they completed was digging up an old fuel tank that was no longer used, themselves.
Nikki has found that educating herself on these topics will be integral in the process. She also sees the importance of going little by little and building up to the end goal. So instead of purchasing the most energy efficient front door, purchasing a less expensive option and supporting with extra insulation might be a more cost-effective route. Thanks to CUB, she also knows to look for utility rebates on many of these improvement projects.
All in all, CUB was able to help save Nikki $400 immediately and help make the energy used in her home cleaner by making her aware of renewable energy programs such as Renewable*Connect from Xcel. Find CUB at an upcoming event to sign up for an energy consultation yourself, or just contact us at 651-300-4701.