Energy Efficiency Financing
Energy hogs produce wasteful spending, which is tough to stomach when your dollars may already be stretched thin by rising costs and stagnant incomes. Then, sometimes your energy efficiency problems may be more stressful when you see an initial estimate for the project that will solve your problems. So, what happens when you find a problem you can’t afford to fix immediately? Maybe it’s your HVAC system or maybe you need to insulate parts of your home. Either way, there are upfront and long-term costs to consider when you look for ways to lower your energy bill. But don’t let this news get you down. There are options available to fund your next energy efficiency project; you just need to know where to look!
You may be eligible for various loan options through your financial institution. Check with your financial advisor to see which loan options that may be available to you.
Yadkin Valley Economic Development District, Inc. (YVEDDI)
YVEDDI offers two programs that could help finance your next energy efficiency project. Its Weatherization Program was designed to help elderly, disabled, and low-income individuals weatherize their homes. So if you need to weather-strip your doors or insulate your home, this program could provide the financing you need. Applicants must meet the income requirements (200 percent of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Poverty Index) to be eligible for assistance.
The Heating Air Repair and Replacement Program offers financial assistance to low-income families who are interested in repairing or replacing an existing heating system. The program is also administered by YVEDDI, but the income requirements are a little more stringent (150 percent of the U.S. DHHS Poverty Index). Aside from the income requirement, the standards to determine eligibility essentially mirror the requirements of the Weatherization Program.
Applications for both programs must be completed in person and are reviewed on a first-come, first-served basis. Funding is provided by the Department of Energy but limited, so make sure to contact YVEDDI quickly to see if you are eligible to receive assistance.
United States Department of Agriculture – Rural Development
USDA Rural Development offers housing programs for rural Americans. The criteria and eligibility differs for each program, but most housing programs are intended for low-income families looking to buy, build, repair, or renovate a primary residence. They include grants, direct loans and guaranteed loans.
Single Family Home Ownership Direct Loans (Section 502) – Used to help buy, build, repair or rehabilitate safe, well-built, affordable homes for rural Americans.
Single Family Home Ownership Guaranteed Loans (Section 502) – Used to purchase a new or existing home.
Single Family Home Ownership Direct Repair Loans and Grants (Section 504) – Used to help low income homeowners remove health and safety hazards by repairing or replacing their roof, winterizing, purchasing or repairing their heating system, structural repair, water and sewer connect fees, and similar uses.
Rural Rental Housing Direct Loans (Section 515) – Used to construct or rehabilitate safe, well-built, affordable rental housing for low income individuals and families.
Rural Rental Housing Guaranteed Loans (Section 538) – Used for new construction or substantial rehabilitation of rental housing for low to moderate income families.
Farm Labor Housing (Section 514 & 516) – Used for new construction or substantial rehabilitation of rental housing for farm workers.
For more information on these USDA Rural Development Housing Programs, contact your local office and ask to speak to a housing program technician. Residents of Surry, Yadkin and Stokes counties should contact the Dobson office (336-386-8751). Wilkes County residents should contact the Jefferson office (336-246-2885), and Forsyth County residents can call the Winston-Salem office (336-767-0720).
Your next project could be financed by your local credit union or if you meet the designated criteria, the federal government. Just make sure to check your current energy usage and the project’s impact on your future usage before you select your source of financing. You can do this online through your Smarthub account or by contacting our office at (336) 356-8241.