The U.S. Department of Energy and the State of Missouri are offering free weatherization improvements to homeowners who meet certain income requirements. Renters can also benefit from this program through cooperation with their landlords.
Improvements can range from a tune-up of your furnace and hot water heater to a complete replacement of outdated and/or unsafe heating and cooling equipment.
The benefits to the homeowner and the planet are immediate. According to the Missouri Department of Economic Development, a partner in the program, a home that has been weatherized can reduce fuel usage by 35 percent for the typical low income home. They say that every $1 invested in the program returns $2.51 to the household and society through lower electric and gas bills, allowing residents to spend more money in the community. So even if you don’t qualify for free weatherization, investments you make in updating your furnace, a/c, and hot water heater will pay off in a short period of time.
Qualifications are based on a sliding scale, with a family of 5 with a gross income of up to $55,140 a year could benefit from this program.
For more information contact the United Services Community Action Agency, the local non-profit agency in charge of administering the Home Weatherization Program in our area. Their number is (816) 358-6868, or you can visit their website at www.choose-hope.org.