Rethinking Energy - affordable clean energy efficiency upgrades for the home
WHAT WE RECOMMEND....since PowerSaver loans are not available nationally:
 
Quicken Loans offers, IN ALL 50 STATES, a cash-back refinance loan, to give you the cash for an energy/water* efficiency retrofit/upgrade.  An average cost would be about $25,000 for a full retrofit.  The loan payback rate is between 4% and 5%.  
Contact Quicken Loans client relations at 800-863-4332. 

* water is now more scarce in the West and South,  and parts of the Midwest, and uses energy to get it to our homes, as well. 
 
In Northern CA, there are 2 choices for other loans -
 
with Energy Upgrade CA, call 866-878-6008, for a free Home Upgrade Advisor.
Their website is www.BayAreaEnergyUpgrade.org 
 
for new reinstated PACE loans, available in 17 counties,  now with Renewable Funding in Oakland,  call 510-451-7900.  Their website is www.renewfund.com.

NEW -  IN CERTAIN CITIES ACROSS CA:

The Hero loan, for Home Efficiency Retrofit Opportunities.   
See details at www.heroprogram.com
15 out of the 19 cities in Contra Costa county now offer these loans.  
If your city does not, give your City Hall a call, to request they join.


FIRST STEP FOR A RETROFIT/ UPGRADE to your home...
 
We recommend having an energy/water audit done on your home.  This cost can be added to your loan.  

Professionals to hire for audits, can be found at www.EfficiencyFirst.org
a nation-wide non-profit.  Look under, Find a Member Company, on its home page.

Also, refer to the list below, which is covered by energy retrofit loans in Sonoma county CA, to determine the approximate cost of your upgrade. 
 
The MOST ENERGY IMPACT from this upgrade will come from upgrading to an Energy Star furnace, with upgraded ductwork, upgrading to a solar water heater or tankless heater, and Energy Star refrigerator, insulation in the attic, walls, and basement, and dual/triple pane window installations.  And efficient pool heating too.
 
The MOST WATER IMPACT would be first:  reducing your lawn by half with a drip system and low-water trees and plants - see Sunset magazine's new publication, Water-wise Gardening:  33 lush n0-lawn landscapes, 88 best plants for drought. 2nd most impact:  upgrades to low-flow or dual flushes, and low-flow shower-heads and sink aerators. 3rd most impact:  upgrading appliances to HE (high efficiency):  water heater, washing machine and dishwasher.
 
THE IMPORTANCE OF THIS UPGRADE:  it means cutting down on the use of energy in the residential building sector, considered the 'low hanging fruit' because homeowners have within their grasp, an easy way to save energy, while lowering carbon emissions significantly. 
 
Doing an energy efficiency upgrade can reduce energy use by 30%, and by going with solar water heating and solar electric, can reduce energy costs by 70%.
 
Residential housing is the area most behind on this front. More importantly, cutting down on carbon emissions from buildings, accounts for close to 50% of all US carbon emissions.  This is big!
 
 
ONCE YOU HAVE PRIMED YOUR HOME FOR ENERGY and WATER EFFICIENCY,
 
THEN -  homeowners are ready for clean energy applications
 
We recommend SOLAR LEASING, with the following companies, with NO MONEY DOWN:
 
www.SolarCity.com - in AZ, CA, CO, CT, MD, MA, NJ, NY, OR and PA.
 
www.Sungevity.com - in AZ, CA, CO, DE, MD, MA, NJ and NY. 
As clients, we can get you a bonus as a new customer, with this code:  90579
 
www.SunRun.com - in AZ, CA, CO, CT, HI, MD, MA, NJ, NY, OR and PA.
 
www.Verengo.com - in CA, NY and NJ.
 
Small Wind and Geothermal applications are also available with an internet search.
 
We recommend a new small wind company, just launched in Dec 2013, called Primo Wind.  See www.PrimoWind.com.
 
OR - check our newest website for how CCAs are moving across the US, at
www.BeThe100percentChange.vpweb.com .  We welcome your help in moving legislation in your state, and building these CCAs county by county, to move Renewables - solar and small wind - to get us on track for a low-carbon world.
 
 
PLEASE CHECK ONE OF OUR SISTER WEBSITES...with a menu of 17 ways to go low carbon in all aspects of your life, at www.LowCarbonPledge.vpweb.com
 
 
POSSIBLE LIST OF AN ENERGY/WATER EFFICIENCY UPGRADE, based on the current California AB811 program, currently in operation in Sonoma county CA and the city of Palm Desert CA...
 
BUILDING INTERIOR/EXTERIOR and POOL:
 
   High efficient heating/cooling - look into hydronic heating
   Efficient water heaters - look into solar water heaters
   Cool roof systems
   Reflective roofs and coatings
   Attic & wall insulation
   Reflective/radiant barriers
   Whole house/attic fans
   High efficiency windows/doors
   Weatherstripping/window filming
   Efficient skylights/added natural light
   Solar tubes/paneling
   High efficient pool equipment
   Solar thermal for pool heating
   Electric vehicle plug-in stations
   High efficiency lighting installation
   Geothermal exchange heat pumps
 
 
WATER APPLICATIONS:
 
  INTERIOR
     High efficiency toilets (including dual flush)
     Low flow shower heads/sink aerators
     Hot water delivery/recirculation systems
     On-demand hot water systems
     Manifold or core plumbing systems
     Hot water pipe insulation
  
 
   EXTERIOR
     Evapotranspiration irrigation systems
       or smart irrigation controllers
     Permanent rainwater cisterns - also called rain harvesting
     Matched precipitation rate sprinkler heads
     High efficiency outdoor (drip) irrigation


Congratulations!  You are on your way to being a VALUABLE example to the rest of your community....we call you a climate hero.  Thank you for your efforts!
 
 

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