Ever thought about renewable energy for your home? Maybe you thought it was too much work or too expensive. You’re in for a treat then because switching to renewable energy have never been easier or cheaper for residents of Alabama. Here are some of the best steps you can take to switch your family to renewable energy.
- Buy green power. There are lots of ways to buy green power but thankfully we have one the easiest and most widely acclaimed programs in the Tennessee Valley. The Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) operates the Green Power Switch program. Through this program, you can elect to pay extra money (in $4 increments) on your utility bill to support regional renewable energy projects that range from your neighbor’s solar installation to a wind project in the mountains of Tennessee. You can find out more at tva.gov/greenpowerswitch/. Alabama Power also offers residential and commercial customers the option to support renewable energy, through its Renewable Energy Certificate (REC*) program. For as little as $1.25 a month, you can purchase RECs that are associated with energy generated from renewable sources, such as wind. More information on their program can be found HERE.
- Go geo-thermal. Geo-thermal heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) uses the power of the Earth’s constant temperature to power your home. Think about this for a moment. The Earth stays a relatively constant temperature (~56° F). Rather than heat your home from 32° F winter air from outside, why not use almost 60° air from the Earth? And 56° air will sure feel good during our Alabama summers. Geo-thermal HVAC units are a little more expensive up front but with the typical energy savings, estimated at 40-60%, it will pay the extra cost back in no time. That doesn’t even include the 30% Federal tax credit which will make the purchase price almost the same as a regular HVAC unit! To find a reputable contractor you’ll want to contact me at email@example.com
- Install solar panels on your home. Before you say they’re too expensive, check out the new prices on residential solar. Panel prices have dropped more than 60% in the last few years which is yielding big savings for customers like you. Would you be shocked to know that a residential solar power system can be purchased for less than $10K BEFORE any incentives are added? Tack on the 30% Federal tax incentive with a lucrative 20 year royalty from TVA and you could have your system paid for in less than 8 years. Even better, if you are buying a home adding solar panels into your 30-year mortgage could have you cash flow positive from day one.