Low Income Housing Gets Energy Makeover

MassachusettsA housing complex in Fitchburg, MA, has new energy efficiency heating, water heaters and LED lighting, according the Sentinel & Enterprise. The upgrades at the 140-unit apartment complex cost $290,000.

Under the MassSave program, the complex qualified for a 100 percent matching rebate. The funds came from Unitil, which is a cosponsor of the program. The story said that the complex qualified because more than half of its residents fall below the state’s median income threshold.

New gear in the complex, which was built in 1983, include six high efficiency boilers, four water-fed motor pumps, three water heaters and more than 1,000 LEDs.

Low income housing is a surprisingly fruitful area for energy efficiency. Landlords are constrained in how much they can raise rents. Thus, other areas are considered as ways to increase revenue. For instance, the use of solar energy is growing in low and middle income communities. Creative financing has a lot to deal with causing — and extending — this trend. In low income communities, solar is given an extra push because it creates local jobs.

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