A new program provides residents in two southwest Detroit neighborhoods the opportunity to receive an energy audit and significant energy-efficiency improvements for only $25.
The program targets more than 450 homes in the Hubbard Farms and Hubbard Richard neighborhoods. It is arranged through a partnership of Better Buildings for Michigan, Southeast Michigan Regional Energy Office, and Southwest Solutions.
More then 30 homes in the target area have already received energy audits and have become eligible for over $1,000 in energy-saving upgrades.
“We hope that every resident takes advantage of this extraordinary chance to save money and energy, while at the same time providing needed work for people trained in weatherization and energy-efficiency,” says Joe Rashid, a Hubbard Richard resident and Southwest Solutions staffperson. Joe put together the application to secure the grant, along with Dan Loacano – who directs the Neighborhood Preservation Team at Southwest Solutions. The application included letters of support from residents and community leaders.
For a $25 investment, the homeowner receives:
- A full energy assessment to pinpoint places where the home is losing energy.
- Air sealing and insulation to reduce leaks and drafts.
- Direct install of energy-saving products, including 10 compact fluorescent light bulbs, faucet aerators, a low-flow showerhead, and a programmable thermostat.
- Professional advise from an energy expert who will review the results of the energy assessment and make suggestions about saving more energy.
If a homeowner decides to take additional energy-saving measures, special incentives are available, including rebates from DTE, interest-free loans, and credits toward other energy-saving upgrades.
Residents who refer other neighbors to the program receive $10 for each referral, which they may keep for themselves or donate to Clark Park.
To learn more about this program as well as special programs for low-income residents, contact the BetterBuildings for Michigan Outreach Team:
Another benefit of the program is the employment opportunities it creates for individuals who have gone through the weatherization training program offered by Detroit GreenWorks Solutions. These individuals are southwest Detroit residents who were unemployed or underemployed and are now hoping to secure a good job in the green industries sector.
Phillip Bailey is GreenWorks graduate who is now working for Walker-Miller Energy Services as an energy auditor because of the Hubbard Farms/Hubbard Richard energy-saving program.
“I am thrilled with my new job and the chance to also help better my community,” Phillip says.