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Carrboro WISE Homes & Buildings Program
Carrboro WISE Homes and Buildings Program: Frequently Asked Questions
  1. I just moved into my house. Am I eligible for the Carrboro WISE Program?
    • ANSWER: No. To be eligible for the Carrboro WISE program you must live in your home for at least 4 months. This requirement is to ensure that there is a minimum amount of historical utility data in order to establish a baseline of energy performance for your home.
  2. How old does my home need to be to be eligible for the Carrboro WISE program?
    • ANSWER: Your home must be at least 12 months old in order to be eligible for the Carrboro WISE program.
  3. If I’ve already had an energy assessment (audit) done on my home by one of the pre-qualified contractors prior to submitting my participation agreement, do I need to have another audit done in order to be eligible to receive future subsidies for improvements?
    • ANSWER: If the audit was done on or after October 1st, 2010, and if it meets the grant criteria of the Carrboro WISE program as determined by program staff, you do not need to have another audit. However, if (1) the audit was done prior to October 1st, 2010, (2) if it was performed by someone other than a pre-qualified contractor, or (3) if the condition of your home or performance of its mechanical equipment has significantly changed for any reason since the audit was performed, you will need to get another audit by a pre-qualified contractor.
  4. Do I have to receive an energy assessment if I would like to be eligible for future improvement subsidies and I already know I need to replace my HVAC unit or other appliances?
    • ANSWER: Yes. An energy assessment performed by a WISE program pre-qualified contractor is mandatory for program participation. Any measure installed before a WISE program energy assessment is conducted does not qualify for subsidy funds.
  5. How will future residential subsidy projects be designed?
    • ANSWER: In order to be eligible to receive subsidy funds for  energy improvement project, the measures installed must reduce  energy usage by an estimated 15% from the energy baseline. The energy baseline is found using your past 12 months of utility data. If the measures that a homeowner wishes to install do not meet the estimated 15% reduction, the  project will not qualify for subsidy funds.
  6. If I have recently installed energy efficiency improvements in my home, will I be eligible to receive a rebate through the WISE program?
    • ANSWER: No. A goal of the program is to incentivize energy efficiency improvements. Work conducted before the program began or outside of official program participation does not qualify for subsidy funds.
  7. May I work with a contractor that is not pre-qualified as part of this program to perform energy assessments or eligible energy improvements?
    • ANSWER: Subsidies for energy assessments and eligible energy improvements are only available for work that is performed by a pre-qualified contractor.
  8. Why must I send the recent 12 months of utility data to the Energy Efficiency Coordinator along with my Homeowner Participation Agreement?
    • ANSWER: The home performance contractor conducting your energy assessment must have the information to find your energy baseline  in order to estimate the percent energy savings through energy efficiency improvements. In order to ensure that the contractor will have everything needed to conduct a complete assessment during the time scheduled, the program requires the homeowner to provide the data along with the Homeowner Participation Agreement before the list of prequalified contractors will be provided.
  9. Is Carrboro’s program the same or different than Chapel Hill’s program?
    • ANSWER: Carrboro’s program is different from Chapel Hill’s program currently in that, aside from the Duke Energy partnership, Carrboro is only subsidizing energy assessments and not funding improvements, although Carrboro hopes to begin providing additional subsidies for  improvements later in 2011.  Carrboro’s program is otherwise being designed to be similar to Chapel Hill’s program, and is being administered by the same contractor and Energy Program Manager.  The Town’s are working through a Memorandum of Agreement to collaborate on a joint program that serves the combined community and encourages a growth in demand for energy efficiency services locally.
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