Your HomeAdvance Questions - Answered!
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- How do you know what my energy savings will be?
- How much will my HomeAdvance payments be?
- How long will I be paying with my savings?
- What happens if my project saves more energy than expected?
- What happens if my project saves less energy than expected?
- What if I move or want to leave the program?
- What's the interest rate?
- How is this different from a loan?
- How does HomeAdvance make money?
- How does billing work?
- Where is HomeAdvance available?
- Are oil to gas conversions eligible for HomeAdvance?
- Can I use my own contractor or plumber to install upgrades with HomeAdvance?
How do you know what my energy savings will be?
How do we predict the future? We look at the past!
After your project is complete, every time you get a bill from your utilities we compare the energy you did use to the amount you would have used if the improvements were not made. This calculation is personalized by our Home Energy Pros, based on your home's characteristics, your actual past energy use, and the weather in your zip code.
How much will my HomeAdvance payments be?
Overall, your energy budget will remain roughly the same as it is today, because you'll be paying your energy savings to HomeAdvance.
Your HomeAdvance payments will vary with the weather, based on how much energy you actually save.
Typically our customers reduce their energy use by 10-30%!
How long will I be paying with my savings?
You get to choose how long you want to be in the program!
Choosing a longer partnership with HomeAdvance allows us to give you the most savings up front (meaning you get the lowest project cost today).
You can pay down faster at any time and use your bonus savings to shorten your term.
You can also leave any time with no penalty.
What happens if my project saves more energy than expected?
If you save more than expected, you share in those benefits with cash back!
Every year we look at how your home saved as compared to projected, and if you saved more than expected we'll write you a check for Bonus Savings - you can keep this money as cash back or apply it towards ending your term in the program early.
If you see that your project is consistently saving a lot and you want to leave the program early, you can do so with no penalty!
What happens if my project saves less energy than expected?
You pay based on what you save, so if you save less, you pay less. It's that simple.
If your home saves nothing at all, there's a small payment based on one quarter of the expected savings. What this means for you in the long run is that if you end up saving nothing, you'll actually end up paying us less than the cash price of the project over the term of the program - a great deal!
What if I move or want to leave the program?
One of the best features of HomeAdvance is that there is no pre-payment penalty.
When you sign up you will be provided with a transparent early payment schedule, which you can use if you move, or otherwise decide to leave the program.
You will never have to pay to HomeAdvance more than the amount that we originally paid towards your project.
What is the interest rate?
HomeAdvance is not a loan, so there is no interest rate. You only pay what you save. HomeAdvance makes a profit if your project is working, but if you don’t save, the program actually loses money. It’s the only accountable option.
If you were to take out a regular loan, you’d owe the bank the same amount of principal and interest every month no matter how your project is working.
How is this different from a loan?
HomeAdvance is a results-based payment option, meaning that you pay based on what you actually save. This is much fairer than taking out a loan, which you will need to pay the same principal and interest regardless of how well your project is working.
Still not seeing the difference ? Let's compare two example scenarios:
SCENARIO A: YOU SAVE AS EXPECTED
- Right now, you are accustomed to paying $100/month for energy
- Your energy bills drop to $80/month, and your $20 energy savings pay for your project. Your total energy cost with HomeAdvance is still $100/month.
- Let's say a comparable loan would also be $20/month. Your total energy cost with a loan is $100/month.
SCENARIO B: YOU SAVE LESS THAN EXPECTED
- Now let's say your project is not performing as well as we expected, and your energy bills only drop to $90/month.
- Your $10/month energy savings will go toward your project. Your total energy cost with HomeAdvance is still $100/month.
- If you took out a loan, you would still owe the same monthly payment. Your total energy cost would be $110/month.
How does HomeAdvance make money?
We know, this sounds too good to be true, right? No money is free. HomeAdvance makes money over time if your energy savings are what we expect.
Remember, you only pay what you save, so you’ll pay HomeAdvance a portion of what you would have spent on wasted energy over time if you didn’t do this project.
What’s great for you is that if you think HomeAdvance is making too much money, you can leave at any time with no penalty and start keeping your savings for yourself!
How does billing work?
After you join HomeAdvance, you will receive clear reports and bills timed with your normal utility bills which track your savings and project payment progress.
We also offer optional Combined Billing -- rather than pay utility bills plus a Sealed Bill, we can combine them into one payment for you!
Whether you choose combined billing or not, all of our customers pay their HomeAdvance statements via automatic direct debit.
Do you accommodate budget billing?
Yes, we do!
Where is HomeAdvance available?
HomeAdvance is currently available only in the State of New York.
Are oil to gas conversions eligible for HomeAdvance?
YES! HomeAdvance works great with oil to gas conversions because of the energy savings achieved from switching from oil (a more expensive fuel) to gas (a less expensive fuel).
With HomeAdvance for oil to gas conversions, you'll be paying less each month than you would be for oil AND your energy savings will pay for the project overtime, too.
You can learn more about how HomeAdvance works for oil to gas conversions in this brochure.
Can I use my own contractor?
Yes - as long as you or your contractor are able to provide evidence of a signed work scope, photos of the current condition of the areas for improvement in your home, and photos of the completed improvements, you are able to utilize HomeAdvance to cover the costs of a Home Upgrade project completed by a contractor or plumber of your choosing.
Please contact us so we can give you more information about how HomeAdvance could work for you.