Portland Realtor Insider: Energy Efficiency On the Rise in Beaverton

There’s more good news for alternative energy and energy efficiency in the Portland Real Estate world! Last week I wrote about the potential statewide expansion of the Portland Clean Energy Works program, and the city of Beaverton is hedging their bets and establishing their own version of the homeowner energy-efficiency support system. With qualifying good credit, equity, and up-to-date mortgages, Beaverton residents seeking to update the energy-efficiency of their homes will be able to apply for a loan between $3,000 and $10,000. Energy-efficient improvements are vital if you’re planning on selling a home in Portland in the future, as buyers are increasingly demanding sustainable homes that save money over time.

The Beaverton loans will have a 5% interest rate and will be repaid over 5 years. Eligible projects may include insulation, duct work, furnaces, water heaters, windows and doors. An energy audit will determine which projects would give homeowners the most bang for their buck, and officials plans to track the savings after improvements are made.

Seed money for the $250,000 program comes from federal stimulus funds through the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant program. The city of Beaverton is also on the cutting edge of solar electricity, having recently launched Solar Beaverton, a pilot program that hopes to have 50 Beaverton residences converted to solar power. The program provides residents a more than 80 percent discount on the cost of a solar system purchase after factoring in federal and state tax credits and incentives from the Energy Trust of Oregon. Based on the success of the pilot program, the City of Beaverton anticipates rolling out a broader citywide solar program in 2011.
For more info on Beaverton’s energy programs, call Andrea Lindberg, block grant coordinator, at 503-526-2488.

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