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Homeowners save energy costs in weatherization program

Posted at 5:56 AM, Jun 03, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-03 18:00:40-04

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — The Weatherization Assistance Program offered by the Nevada Rural Housing Authority eases the cost of making homes more energy-efficient. Upgrades can save a household an average of $437 in annual heating and cooling costs.

“My husband is on disability and I’m fighting for mine," said Tammy Nicholas. "We’re low-income, and we’ve had some problems and just not the money to fix it.”

Nicholas has lived in her home for more than a year. She was overwhelmed by all the problems in her home, like holes in the floorboards, cracks in the windows, old appliances, and leaks in the roof. In less than a week of applying to the Weatherization Assistance Program, Nicholas was approved and welcomed weatherization inspectors into her home.

“They’re gonna do windows," Nicholas said. "They’re gonna put exhaust fans in my kitchen. They’re gonna be doing sub-floor, and I can’t even remember everything that they’re gonna do.”

Nicolas teared up when talking about the program being a "Godsend." She said it'll reduce her energy bill by hundreds.

“Anything that’s over 10 years old, we want to just get rid of it," said Sonny Martinez, a quality control inspector with the Nevada Rural Housing Authority. "We want to replace it and put something in that’s more energy-efficient.”

Even staying conscious about the appliances that are turned on and off in a home can save money.

“I walk into these homes when I’m doing these assessments and people have a TV in every room and every TV will be on. Every light will be on. Exhaust fans are on," Martinez said.

There are other tips to make a home more energy-efficient:

  • Close blinds to block sunlight
  • Change air filters
  • Use energy-efficient light bulbs
  • Program the thermostat to a set temperature when no one is in the home

Martinez said the simplest weatherization measure is to just turn off and unplug appliances when they're not in use.

To apply to the Weatherization Assistance Program by the Nevada Rural Housing Authority, nvrural.org.