Spend Money to Save Money

An older couple crouches in the garage to pet their dog. A hybrid electric water heater is in the background saving energy.

Benton REA’s Energy Savings Loan program helps members improve efficiency without breaking the bank.

When it comes to your home’s energy efficiency, sometimes you need to spend money to save money.

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the average single-family home spends more than 54% of its annual electricity bill on space heating and air conditioning and water heating consumes another 19%.

The age of your home comfort system and how it is maintained is correlated to the amount of money spent powering it.

Older units are more expensive to operate as they lose efficiency over time.

A new air source heat pump can save as much as 18,352 kWh of electricity a year, or about $120 per month ($1,437 per year) if they replace a standard electric furnace.

Hybrid electric water heaters use half the energy of standard electric water heaters, saving users up to $300 a year, according to the Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance.

Efficiency isn’t cheap. A new heat pump installation can cost anywhere from $5,000 to $18,000, and a hybrid electric water heater professional installation can cost up to $2,500, rebates not included.

However, your energy savings will add up year after year. A well-maintained air source heat pump will run efficiently and save you money for 20 to 30 years. All new hybrid electric water heaters that qualify for a Benton REA rebate come with a 10-year warranty.

You can decide if the energy and money saved are worth the money spent.

Money Back with Rebates

First, make sure you select a qualified contractor and research Benton REA’s current available rebates. Then, apply immediately after purchase to get some of your money back as soon as possible.

Ideally, the best way to save money is to pay with cash when you have it rather than paying interest. But, if you need to quickly replace an aging or failed appliance, Benton REA can help.

Energy Savings Loans

Benton REA offers 3% interest loans to residential members interested in purchasing and installing new, energy-saving home upgrades. Payments are simply added to your monthly electric bill. Based on the amount needed, members have four loan options:

  • Level 1: $1,000 or less, three-year maximum term.
  • Level 2: $1,001 to $2,000, five-year maximum term.
  • Level 3: $2,001 to $5,000, five-year maximum term.
  • Level 2: $5,001 to $25,000, 10-year maximum term.

Most energy-saving home improvements that qualify for a Benton REA rebate, also qualify for a loan. Common qualifying projects include:

  • Air source heat pumps.
  • Hybrid electric water heaters.
  • High-performance storm windows.
  • Duct insulation.
  • Duct sealing.
  • Insulation.
  • Whole-house air sealing.

Loan Requirements

To qualify for a Benton REA’s energy savings loan, you must be a Benton REA member in good standing. Additional financial qualifications may be required based on the level of loan requested. A pre- and post-inspection by Benton REA staff may be required.

Loan provisions and applications are available at www.BentonREA.org/loans.

Before you apply, call 509-781-6751 or email emiller@bentonrea.org.

Benton REA Rebates

Residential Rebates: Get an immediate return on your investment with a Benton REA rebate.

Income-Qualified Rebates: Homeowners who meet low-income qualifications may receive increased rebate amounts for energy-efficient home upgrades.

Custom Commercial and Ag Rebates: Benton REA works with you to identify the best energy and cost savings.

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