Monday, January 24, 2011

The Benefits of Being Broke

OK... first of all, I don't really consider myself broke, just frugal and finding ways to outsmart the system. But I am living on a small enough amount of money that I was able to qualify for a govenment run, stimulus funded weatherization program.

Sooo... this morning I got a free energy audit done on my house! It was totally cool... they hooked up this fan to the front door and checked the whole house for leaks. Turns out all of my caulking and weatherstripping worked, and the house it so tightly sealed that they can't seal it up any more without putting a vent into the basement for combustion air on the hot water heater!

But, I could use some more insulation in the attic and insulation in the walls, both of which they are going to do for free! Totally cool! I just have to figure out how to get enough of the siding off so they can drill holes for the wall insulation, otherwise they have to drill the holes inside - yikes!

Turns out my 12 year old fridge is operating with the same efficiency as a brand new one (costing $3.50/month to run) so no benefit there. They might even put storm windows on the single pane basement windows, but it depends. Apparently sometimes it makes it so the windows can't be opened completely which is a fire/egress hazard. I'm keeping my fingers crossed because those things leak heat like crazy.

I admit, I feel a tad bit guilty getting this stuff for free. I still can't really believe it... I mean really, I could be making more money if I were willing to go get a "real" job. On the other hand, I've paid a boatload of taxes during the years when I was making more money... so I'm not gonna feel too guilty about it!

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