AHFC Announces Energy Cost Relief for Alaskans, $300 Million for Weatherization and Energy Rebates, Second Loan Program

$300 Million for Weatherization and Energy Rebates, Second Loan Program

Anchorage, Friday, May 02, 2008 – Alaskans soon will have access to a well funded, multi-million dollar state weatherization program and to an equally well funded home energy rebate program, according to Dan Fauske, CEO/Executive Director of Alaska Housing Finance Corporation. AHFC also will make available the option for Alaskans to finance energy conservation improvements to their homes with a market interest rate second mortgage.

AHFC’S board of directors on Wednesday approved an emergency resolution authorizing the implementation of regulations for distributing $300 million authorized by the legislature and Governor Sarah Palin this year. Two hundred million of this money will be used to expand AHFC’s nationally recognized home weatherization program, while $100 million will provide home energy rebates to homeowners making energy upgrades to their homes.

“The legislature and Governor recognized the severe energy cost problems facing many Alaskans, and they acted decisively by authorizing this large amount of money for energy conservation,” said Fauske. “With oil at $115 a barrel and Alaskans facing unprecedented heating costs, this money will provide ongoing savings to thousands of Alaska’s families.”

Weatherization: AHFC will increase current funding to the five statewide nonprofit weatherization providers, adding 15 State-designated housing authorities to provide services. This infusion of funds will allow the program’s income qualification to increase from 60 to 100 percent of median income ($77,700 for a family of four).

This increase in the income limits will allow more people to participate in the free weatherization program. This program is currently available. Home Energy Rebates: For those not qualifying for weatherization, a home energy rebate program will provide rebates to homeowners toward the cost of energy improvements.

The rebate program will require a certified energy rater to determine the best improvements for a home through an energy analysis. The rating will provide a list of cost-effective measures which will save energy. Homeowners may then choose the best options for their situation, complete the work, schedule a follow-up inspection to verify the energy improvements, and apply to AHFC for the rebate. Rebates are based on step increases to the energy efficiency of the home as determined by the AkWarm energy-rating software. Depending on the house and the improvements made to increase efficiency, the maximum reimbursable rebate may reach as high as $10,000.

AHFC will announce the availability of this program in the near future. New Construction Energy Rebate: A $7,500 rebate will be available for newly built homes which achieve a very efficient energy rating of 5 Star Plus. This program is currently available.

Interest Rate Reductions for New and Existing Homes: AHFC currently offers options, which provide interest rate reductions when purchasing new and existing energy efficient homes or refinancing with energy renovations. AHFC will continue to offer these reductions.

Second Mortgage Program for Energy Conservation: AHFC’s board of directors on Wednesday approved a statewide loan program for specified energy-efficient retrofits and upgrades to existing homes. An AkWarm energy rating is required.

Loans of up to $30,000 will be made directly through AHFC and can be used in conjunction with AHFC’s newly announced energy rebate program.

For more details on the programs, a list of weatherization providers, or qualifications for the weatherization program, visit our website www.ahfc.us. If someone lives in a house owned by a State-designated housing authority, they should contact the housing authority directly.

For more detailed information about these programs, visit AHFC’s website www.ahfc.us or call 330-8300.

AHFC is a self-supporting public corporation with offices in 16 communities statewide. It provides statewide financing for multi-family complexes, congregate facilities, and single-family homes, with special loans for first-time home buyers, low-and moderate-income borrowers, veterans, teachers, health care professionals, public safety officers, and those living in rural areas of the state.

HFC also provides energy and weatherization programs, low-income rental assistance in 17 communities, and special programs for the homeless. Since 1986, AHFC has contributed more than $1.5 billion to Alaska’s State budget revenues through cash transfers, capital projects and debt service payments.

For more information about AHFC or its programs, contact Bryan Butcher, Director of Government Relations and Public Affairs at bbutcher (at) ahfc.state.ak (dot) us or 907-330-8445.

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