Friday, April 25, 2014

Energy Savings Assistance Program Fixed My House

When I first got the call from this program I thought it was a scam.  Why would my local utility company want to come to my house and make repairs for free?  It sounded too good to be true.  The agent on the phone told me that Pacific Gas and Electric had a free program to improve the energy efficiency of their customer's homes, and if I qualified, repairs such as weather stripping, repairing my furnace, or even replacing my old refrigerator would be done for free.  I was sceptical but agreed to let a technician come out to verify my financial status and evaluate the needs of my home.  I made sure that the caller understood that I did not have money for any repairs and would not have any when the technician came out.

Well, on the day that the technician arrived, I verified that I was within their income limits for a family of three (less than $39,000 a year).  The nice man filled out the paper work, which I examined thoroughly for any hidden charges, and then he went to work.  He started at 9:30 a.m. and worked until 5:00 p.m.  First he put a blanket on my heater, then he weather stripped the doors to my house.  Next, he filled in all the holes that were in the walls letting in cold air.  He replaced our old light bulbs with new energy efficient ones.  He fixed my furnace and insulated it so that the heat would properly flow throughout the house. He replaced two of my light fixtures that weren't working properly, and he put new covers on our electric outlets and a new cover for to my attic .  Amazingly, when he saw the duck tape I had holding the handle together on my microwave oven, he replaced the whole microwave with a new more energy efficient one.

If I had had to pay for all this work, it would have cost me thousands of dollars.  I know this because it cost me $1700 to fix two exterior doors last summer.

If you need home repairs done, please check with your local gas and electric utility company first to see if they have a similar program.  You may qualify in other ways other than income particularly if you are disabled.  If I had known about the Energy Savings Assistance Program, I would have saved the $1700 I paid for those exterior doors last summer because they will replace doors as well..

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