As part of its award-winning Climate Change Action Plan, Wellington City Council plans to spend $100,000 this financial year assisting at least 800 households to make their homes more energy efficient.
Mayor Celia Wade-Brown says the offer includes a free home energy assessment by a trained coach, a detailed action plan tailored to the needs of each household and subsidies on a range of energy-saving products.
"We want as many Wellingtonians as possible to be living in warm, dry, comfortable homes with affordable energy bills," she says. "As a community, it's good for our health and productivity and, as a city, it will help us to collectively reduce our carbon footprint. We hope that people who benefit from this scheme will tell their friends and family to maximise its impact."
Home coaches from service providers Home&dry will be able to offer simple tips on how to save energy, explain changes that could potentially be made to homes and the assistance on offer through the Warm Up New Zealand scheme for insulation and energy-efficient heating systems.
They will look at a range of things - everything from heating, lighting and water use to how you dry your clothes and dispose of household waste - and answer your questions. If you are on a tight budget, they will come up with low-cost, cost-effective suggestions - ones that people renting can also apply, provided the property owner agrees.
The initial assessment, which takes about two hours, is free to the householder. The coaches will have a range of easy-to-install products with them, including low-flow showerheads, energy-efficient light bulbs, hot-water cylinder wraps and draught stoppers, that they can put in on the spot if people want them to. The Council will pay 50 percent of the cost of these particular products, up to a total of $115.
The coaches are trained to provide Homecoach assessments, which have been jointly developed by BRANZ, Beacon Pathway and the New Zealand Green Building Council - with support from the building industry, key government agencies, the Department of Building and Housing and the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority.
To find out more about the Home Energy Saver programme or book a coach, householders should contact Home&dry direct:
Phone: 0508 466 363