Dubbed by some as “cash for caulkers,” this bill offers home energy efficiency remodeling incentives to homeowners and promises to increase employment in Pittsburgh’s hard hit construction industry. Bipartisan legislation has already passed the House Energy and Commerce Committee and has bipartisan support in both the Senate and House. Find out more here about HOMESTAR and how you can benefit and help…
If passed, the program will ramp up quickly, with a minimum of red tape. It establishes a $6 billion homeowner rebate program to encourage immediate investment in energy-efficient appliances, home mechanical systems and insulation, and whole-home energy efficiency retrofits. HOMESTAR will rapidly create jobs in both construction and manufacturing, while saving families money on their energy bills. (read the short summary, a PDF)
At the SILVER STAR level, incentives for homeowners range from $250 per appliance up to $3,000 total. Covered home improvements include air sealing; attic, wall, and crawl space insulation; duct sealing or replacement; and replacement of existing windows and doors, furnaces, air conditioners, heat pumps, water heaters and appliances with high‐efficiency models.
For bigger projects, at the higher GOLD STAR level homeowners receive $3,000 for demonstrated energy savings of 20%, plus an additional $1,000 incentive for each additional 5% of modeled energy savings, with incentives not to exceed 50% of project costs. It requires a sophisticated home energy audit process.
SILVER STAR improvements may be implemented by any appropriately licensed and insured contractor. Contractors implementing the GOLD STAR performance path must be Building Performance Institute accredited, which Regis McQuaide is. Gold Star also requires a home energy audit before work begins, and a test‐out when the performance retrofit is complete.
What you can do now
On the Efficiency First website, you’ll find four steps that you can take to support passage of this win-win bill. Specifically you can call Senators Casey and Spector and tell them what the incentives in the bill would mean to you as a Pittsburgh home owner. Thanks for any support you can offer.
In the meantime Master Remodelers is committed to Sustainability in its home remodeling work, including providing home energy audits and producing award winning green remodeling projects. We also have an excellent Powerpoint presentation on home energy efficiency. And today you can go to the U.S. Energy Star and PA Home Energy websites to find out what kind of incentives and resources exist already. (more on energy efficiency incentives)
You can call 412-341-6585 today to set up an appointment to discuss green remodeling or energy audits for your home. Or email us your questions.