Huntsville gets an extreme energy makeover

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) - Money saved is money earned, that’s the mentality behind the Huntsville Extreme Energy Makeover. The Tennessee Valley Authority, TVA, has awarded Huntsville Utilities $11.7 million to convert low income family homes into energy efficient money savers.

The first 72 homes were just completed in the Brookside Housing Development in Huntsville.
“This is changing situations where families have to make a choice,” said Huntsville Utilities Director of Communications, Joe Gehrdes. “Making that choice between paying their utilities or perhaps paying their rent.”

The Tennessee Valley Authority and Huntsville Utilities are helping to lifting that burden in the housing development.

“We were a recipient of some of those funds, about $540,000,” said Huntsville Housing Authority Workforce Development Manager, Lindsay Pollard.

The grant helps all things energy related; air conditioners, heating and insulation, celing support, windows and doors. The goal is to create a 25% or more reduction in the home’s energy use.

“Utility bills will go down,” said Gehrdes. “And that’s like money in their pocket.”

Brookside Housing Authority is one of the oldest in the city of Huntsville and these changes will improve the quality of life to hundreds of residents in a time of transition.

“Anything that we can do to help them move forward, up and out that’s the goal.” explained Pollard.

Everyone in Madison County under Huntsville Utilities can see if they qualify for the grant help. Huntsville Utilities are working quickly throughout Madison county homes that have signed up. They have surveyed 120 homes and have 50 more lined up. By September 2017 they will upgrade more than eleven hundred homes.

“By reducing the cost of utilities and increasing comfort of living situations. We are hoping to change lives.” Said Gehrdes

The qualifications are :

  • Homes must be 20 years old or older.
  • Homes greater than 50 years must be screened to determine status as to historical designation.
  • Participants must own the home that is to be qualified/improved.
  • Participants must sign an income verification statement and liability release form.
  • Participants must provide picture identification.
  • The total household income of participants during the previous calendar year, must not exceed the limits established for very low income residents of Madison County by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).
  • Participants must not have used natural gas as a primary heat source during the last three years.
  • Contact Huntsville Utilities for income limits and application details at this link or call 256-705-7500.