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Rating sought to quantify homes' energy efficiency

Unlike adding a bathroom or fixing up a kitchen, there's no equity value attached to home energy efficiency improvements -- yet. 

In this month's Greater Knoxville Business Journal, writer Larisa Brass looks at a proposed national energy rating program that aims to change that. The initiative will get a trial run with the help of two local institutions and homeowners in a neighboring state.

Oak Ridge National Laboratory is partnering with TVA to carry out a pilot project that will test the rating program, announced by Vice President Joe Biden last fall.

The project, funded by the Department of Energy with in-kind support from TVA, will assist in extensive energy retrofits on 100 Kentucky homes, according to ORNL researcher Jeff Christian, who is coordinating the project.

The lab will utilize a program from TVA and the Kentucky Housing Corp., which combines TVA's existing home energy evaluation program -- offering home energy audits and rebates for some improvements -- with a a Kentucky program that provides up to $2,000 in rebates or up to $20,000 in low-interest, unsecured loans. The program aims to achieve at least 20 percent energy savings for participating homeowners.

Read more about the new home energy rating project at knoxvillebiz.
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