Efficient Heating in Vermont

Check out this newly produced, six-minute YouTube video on Efficient Heating in Vermont, created by Two Rivers Ottauquechee Regional Commission.

The video describes the types and benefits of home heating options and describes the current rebates and incentives available for residential heating offered by Efficiency Vermont. Topics covered:

  • Cold Climate Heat Pumps

  • Efficient Wood Stoves

  • Wood Pellet Heat

Thank you and best wishes for a Happy Thanksgiving,

Nov. 19 Green Real Estate Crash Course

Vital Communities is offering its popular Green Real Estate Crash Course again on Tuesday, November 19, at Service Credit Union, just off I-89 in Lebanon, NH. Earn 3 elective credits in VT and NH.

Register online at vitalcommunities.org/greenrealestate

This is NOT your average CE course.
Designed with input from Upper Valley Realtors®, Vital Communities, and Efficiency Vermont, this course is fun, practical, and hands-on. The Green Real Estate Crash Course and its accompanying resources expertly boil down the topic of energy efficiency to give you exactly what you NEED to know to help your clients, and no more!

What’s Covered:

 Why “Green” matters in real estate |  Home energy efficiency 101
 Working with green buyers |  Listing green homes |  MLS green fields
 Appraisal Institute Green Addendum |  Hands-on examples

Instructors: 

Lynne LaBombard, Green Designated Realtor® and licensed instructor

Sarah Brock, Energy Program Manager at Vital Communities

Learn more and explore free online resources at vitalcommunities.org/greenrealestate

November Course Details

WHEN: Tuesday, November 19, 9 am-12:15 pm

  • 8:30-8:55 am | Registration and Light Continental Breakfast
  • 9:00 am-12:15 pm | Green Real Estate Crash Course (with one 15min break at ~10:30)
    **You MUST be in your seat at 9:00 am to receive credit**

WHERE: Service Credit Union, 225 Mechanic Street, Lebanon, NH

FEE: Pre-registration: $50 (register online by Friday, November 15). Otherwise $60 at the door.

Thanks to our generous host and sponsor, Service Credit Union, your entire course fee goes toward Vital Communities’ Green Real Estate Program, which provides free resources and direct support for you and your clients year-round.

Questions? Contact Sarah Brock at sarah@vitalcommunities.org or 802-291-9100 x109

12th Annual Roundtable – May 7

You’re Invited!

The 12th Annual Upper Valley Energy Committee Roundtable is Tuesday, May 7, 5-8 pm in West Lebanon! This annual gathering of local energy volunteers is open to all, whether you serve on an energy committee, wish to join or start a committee, or simply want to be inspired. See you there!

Learn more and REGISTER to attend at vitalcommunities.org/energy/roundtable.

Our 2019 Agenda

5 pm | Dinner and Conversation

5:30 pm | Who’s Who – Put names to faces and hear briefly from the sponsors and supporting organizations.

6:15 pm | Local Energy Showcase  – Five brief success stories featuring interesting and inspiring projects from the past year.

7 pm | Transportation: the Elephant in the Room – Transportation is a huge piece of our energy footprint. With improved carpool programs in VT and NH, innovative partnerships, and more attention given to how people and things move around, we’ll identify ways Upper Valley energy committees can make an impact in the realm of sustainable transportation.

Seeking Bids from Solar Installers by Nov. 30

Vital Communities is teaming up with Kearsarge Climate Action to launch a Solarize Kearsarge campaign in spring 2019, following on the tails of the upcoming Weatherize Kearsarge campaign launching in January 2019.

We are seeking proposals from solar photovoltaic (PV) installers who can provide competitive tiered pricing for solar PV installations at private residences and businesses (average size 5 to 6kW) located within Andover, Newbury, New London, Wilmot, and Warner. As more residents sign contracts to go solar with the partner installer prior to the campaign deadline, prices will be reduced for everyone.

Proposals must be submitted to Vital Communities by Friday, November 30.

To learn more and request a copy of the Request for Proposals, contact Sarah Brock, Sarah@VitalCommunities.org or 802.291.9100 x109.

Lebanon Area Businesses – Join us on Sept. 27

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So many small businesses in the Upper Valley are burdened with high energy costs. And not enough time to do anything about it!

We’ve got some good news for you. A group of Lebanon residents are teaming up with Energy & Climate Upper ValleyVital Communities, the Lebanon Area Chamber of Commerce, and the Lebanon Energy Advisory Committeeto host an event this September just for Lebanon businesses.

Business Energy Innovation Conference
Thursday, September 27, 8:30-1pm
(Breakfast and Lunch Included)
Fireside Inn, West Lebanon

The day will focus on innovative renewable energy technologies that will help businesses stay competitive in a clean energy future. Lebanon area businesses will have an opportunity network with other businesses, hear testimonials from industry leaders who have already started to make this transition to renewable energy, and connect with experts in the renewable energy technology field. The event will explore the processes, financial benefits, financing options, and NH State policies surrounding Solar Power, Battery Power Storage, Lighting Design, Heat Pumps, Geo-thermal, and Biomass Heating.

Learn more, view the agenda, and sign up to attend at VitalCommunities.org/Energy/BEIC2018.

Get Stoked on Automated Wood Heat!

Boiler on its last legs? Looking to opt out of fossil fuels? Come learn about today’s self-stoking automated wood heat! Opt out of oil with delivery of local wood pellets and whole home wood heating systems controlled by your thermostat.

Fully automated pellet boilers take the place of your old oil or propane boiler (or furnace) for hands-off, whole-home wood heating. Heating with regionally sourced wood pellets retains wealth locally, creates jobs for our neighbors, decreases your carbon footprint, and helps keep forests as forests. On top of that you may decrease your heating bill by up to 30%.

Join us on Tuesday, April 10th from 7:00-8:30pm at the Chelsea Town Hall for a presentation, learn about $7000 in available rebates, meet local installers, and enjoy light refreshments.

For questions, please contact Sarah Brock, Energy Program Manager at Vital Communities, 802-291-9100 x109 orsarah@vitalcommunities.org.

Weatherize Events in January

Weatherize Round Two kicks off this month across the Upper Valley region.

What is Weatherize? 

Vital Communities partners community volunteer teams with local contractors to help Weatherize participants complete cost-effective home energy improvements. These upgrades save residents money on heating bills, increase comfort, and reduce the amount of energy needed to stay warm throughout the winter.

How can you get involved?

New Hampshire residents living in Orford, Piermont, Lyme, Lebanon, Plainfield, and Cornish and Vermont residents living in Springfield, Chester, Woodstock, Pomfret, and Bridgewater can participate in this round of Weatherize. Visit your state’s Weatherize homepage or sign up here to stay in the loop about all the latest Weatherize events and deadlines.

Each community team will be hosting a launch event later this month. See below to learn more about your community’s upcoming kick-off.

  • Orford-Piermont-Lyme: Saturday, January 27 at the Rivendell Academy in Orford. 2 – 3:30 pm.
  • Lebanon: Monday, January 29 at the Kilton Library. 7 – 8:30 pm.
  • Plainfield-Cornish: Wednesday, January 24 at Plainfield Elementary School. 7 – 8:30 pm.
  • Springfield-Chester: Thursday, January 25 at the Springfield First Congregational Church. 6 – 7:30 pm.
  • Woodstock-Pomfret-Bridgewater: Tuesday, January 30 at Norman Williams Public Library. 6 – 7:30 pm.

What happens at the kick-off events?

The kick-off event is an opportunity to meet your community’s volunteer team, partner contractors, and Vital Communities in a fun and informational setting. You’ll learn about what you can expect from the Weatherize program, chat with neighbors who’ve been through the process before, and get the nitty gritty on costs, benefits, financing, and incentives– all in one place! You don’t want to miss it. Refreshments will be provided and the events are free and open to the public with no registration required.

We’ll see you in January!

Photo credit: Molly Drummond

Green Real Estate Network Kick Off

​Working together to empower home buyers and sellers throughout the Upper Valley to understand home energy costs and invest in energy efficiency.

Over 50 real estate professionals from across the Upper Valley will gather on January 9 to kick off the new Upper Valley Green Real Estate Network, a project of Vital Communities. Participants include Realtors, lenders, home inspectors, appraisers, real estate lawyers, and home energy professionals.

Five Reasons Buyers Care about Energy

  1. The Upper Valley is home to some of the oldest housing stock in  the nation
  2. Energy is often the second highest cost of home ownership (behind mortgage/taxes/insurance)
  3. $7-12k of air sealing and insulation can reduce energy costs by 15-30% andimprove home comfort
  4. Rebates and special financing programs exist to help residents pay for energy improvements
  5. Cost effective energy efficiency improvements are possible in almost any home

Why Time of Sale?

Energy efficiency upgrades deliver cash savings and home comfort from month one. Waiting to weatherize means leaving cash on the table. Buyers can use the transaction process to gather necessary information for efficiency improvements. For example:

  • Past heating fuel use data needed to qualify for rebate programs
  • Confidence that cost effective energy improvements are possible
  • Ability to secure financing for energy improvements alongside a mortgage

Vital Communities and our partners believe we can do more to promote “Green Real Estate” in the Upper Valley by working together than we can by working in isolation. Stay tuned for more from this inspiring group of local real estate leaders!