The City of Fort Collins, Colorado increased the number of homes that are energy efficient through the use of community-based social marketing. Strategies to maximize impact included identifying neighborhoods based on data analysis, simplifying the process for completing upgrades, and using trusted messengers for delivery of tailored messages on energy efficiency services.
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This case study highlights the low-income programs of Efficiency Vermont, the nation’s first public energy efficiency utility, which aims to reduce these customers' high energy burden, freeing up money that they can spend on food, housing, and other necessities. These low-income programs have saved enough electricity to power nearly 8,000 Vermont households for a year and offer solutions that eliminate or reduce up-front costs for residents, a typical barrier to improving energy efficiency in low-income households. Its multifamily energy efficiency program helps renters and building owners save energy, addressing the “split incentive” barrier in which owners have little reason to invest in efficiency measures that benefit tenants who pay their own energy bills.
This document profiles the Chicago-area non-profit Elevate Energy, which offers a full-service energy efficiency retrofit program for owners of and tenants in affordable multifamily buildings in eleven states.
This case study highlights how EmPOWER Maryland’s low-income programs have helped to reduce or eliminate the up-front costs of efficiency upgrades, minimize administrative burden on participants, and provide coordinated services through a statewide network of trusted partners. Under the Multifamily Energy Efficiency and Housing Affordability EmPOWER Program, owners of affordable multifamily housing receive loans and grants with flexible terms for the purchase and installation of a variety of energy improvements, from lighting and appliances to insulation and HVAC systems.
Energy Outreach Colorado (EOC), an independent nonprofit organization created by the State of Colorado, is a one-stop shop for low-income energy services in the state, including programs for affordable multifamily housing. EOC developed partnerships with a variety of organizations across Colorado, leveraged multiple funding sources, and created new and expanded programs to address gaps in low-income energy assistance. This case study highlights EOC’s key features, approach, partners, funding sources, and achievements, as well as their keys to success and tips for replication and sustainability.
Focusing on Colorado Springs, Colorado, as a case study, the U.S. Department of Energy's Building America research team IBACOS suggests a win-win between a builder's investment in energy efficiency and that builder's ability to sell homes. Although this research did not ultimately determine why a correlation may exist, a builder's investment in voluntary energy-efficiency programs correlated with that builder's ability to survive the Great Recession of 2007 to 2009. This report explores the relationship between energy-efficiency ratings and the market performance of several builders in Colorado Springs.
Home heating is the largest energy expense for most U.S. homeowners and accounts for nearly 30% of energy used in the nation's residential buildings. Millions of homeowners in colder regions of the country do not have natural gas available, leaving furnaces to be fueled with heating oil, propane, or electricity. This can often result in higher heating bills for homeowners. However, soon, these 2.6 million homeowners living in cold climates will have another, efficient home heating option. Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), collaborating with Emerson Climate Technologies, developed a prototype for an air-source heat pump for the colder regions of the country--one that heats better and uses significantly less energy.
This case study addresses multifamily energy upgrade experiences by two members of the Better Buildings Residential Network—Elevate Energy and the International Center for Appropriate and Sustainable Technology (ICAST).
This case study features New York City Energy Efficiency Corporation (NYCEEC), a member that focuses on financing energy efficiency and clean energy upgrades for multifamily buildings in the city and surrounding communities.
This case study of Arizona Public Service (APS) and Arizona’s HPwES Sponsor, FSL Home Energy Solutions (FSL), focuses on their continuous improvements designed to elevate customer and contractor experience while boosting program cost-effectiveness.
In this project, the U.S. Department of Energy Building America team Partnership for Advanced Residential Retrofit (PARR) worked with Elevate Energy on three tasks: to conduct pre- and post-retrofit analysis on the income and expense data of 13 Chicago-area multifamily buildings, to compare Chicago income and expense data to two national samples, and to explore the ramifications that energy-efficiency retrofits have on nine Chicago-area neighborhoods.
This multifamily showcase project profiles the significant energy efficiency improvements as well as annual energy savings of 36 percent and cost savings of more than $210,000 at the Castle Square Apartments, located in Boston's South End.
This multifamily showcase project profiles the significant energy improvements as well as annual energy savings of 20 percent and cost savings of nearly $70,000 at the 223 unit Channel Square Apartments, located in Southwest Washington, D.C. The project focused on efficiency measures such as upgrading the central plant boiler and hot water heater, exterior lighting upgrades, window and sliding door replacement, air sealing and insulation of exterior walls and ceilings.
This multifamily showcase project profiles the significant energy improvements as well as annual energy savings of nearly 30 percent and cost savings of $108,500 at the Golda Meir House, Jewish Community Housing for the Elderly in Newton, MA. Some of the energy efficient measures include: high efficiency windows, wall and roof insulation, LED lighting, Energy Recovery Ventilation (ERV) system, advanced building controls to prevent air conditioning use with open windows, boiler and domestic hot water system with high-efficiency boilers and pumps, baseboard hydronic heat and thru-wall air conditioners with air source heat pumps.
This multifamily showcase project profiles the significant energy improvements as well as annual energy savings of 20 percent and cost savings of $68,000 at Los Robles Apartments located in Union City, CA. Los Robles was one of the first Low Income Housing Preservation and Residential Homeownership Act (LIHPRHA) projects in the country to leverage Low-income Housing Tax Credits (LIHTC) and private capital to finance comprehensive energy- and water-efficiency retrofits.
This multifamily showcase project profiles the significant energy improvements as well as annual energy savings of 25 percent and cost savings of $25,000 at Orness Plaza in Mankato, MN. Planning for a substantial renovation of the aging and poorly performing 40 year old building began in 2009 with the goals of improving occupant health, building durability, and the energy and water efficiency of the buildings systems.
This multifamily showcase project profiles the significant energy efficiency improvements as well as annual energy savings of 68 percent and cost savings of nearly $300,000 from the redevelopment of The Anne M. Lynch Homes at Old Colony in Boston, MA, which provides deeply affordable housing in extremely energy-efficient buildings.
This multifamily showcase project profiles the significant energy improvements as well as annual energy savings of 34 percent and cost savings of $23,000 at The Landing Apartments located in Chaska, MN. The Landing Apartments is an affordable, multifamily, senior housing development that is organized as its own nonprofit entity that Aeon controls.
This case study interview shares how GTECH (Growth Through Energy and Community Health) Strategies, a Better Buildings Residential Network member, developed and maintains strong strategic partnerships with trusted local companies and organizations to meet a shared goal of completing 100 home energy upgrade projects.
This U.S. Department of Energy Focus Series highlights the BetterBuildings for Michigan program’s community readiness assessment tool.
This case study highlights the Help My House Pilot Program conducted in South Carolina by Central Electric Power Cooperative that included on-bill financing.
Links to case studies of residential projects and contractors under the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA)'s Home Performance with ENERGY STAR program.
In this video interview segment, Yvonne Kraus of Conservation Services Group describes how program and utility partnerships can co-benefit each other.
This case study explains how Efficiency Maine provided contractor sales training to boost upgrade conversions.
This case study describes Austin Energy's short-term, comprehensive rebate/financing offer to jump-start participation and valuable lessons learned along the way.
This case study discusses the strategies Clean Energy Works Oregon's (now Enhabit's) used to actively engage contractors to make the program successful (e.g., balancing contractors' work priorities, enforcing quality standards).
Through its target audience research, Rutland, Vermont's NeighborWorks H.E.A.T. Squad learned that neighbors are the most trusted messengers of energy efficiency upgrade information, rather than governments or utilities.