Going green is going to pay off for some homeowners in Charlottesville and Albemarle County.
With a new program, people who improve their home's energy efficiency will be able to cash in on the added value. The "Green Appraisal Addendum" is a way to measure how valuable your home is once you've made steps to streamline your energy consumption.
Homeowners in the Charlottesville-Albemarle area might have felt overwhelmed by spending a fortune on upgrades to insulation, HVAC systems, or solar panels - but now the benefits won't just be observed with cheaper bills.
"It's a completely win-win situation. You make your home more comfortable, you make it healthier, you make it more valuable, and you're actually helping to save the environment at the same time, so how can you go wrong?” said Lesley Fore, key accounts manager for the Local Energy Alliance Program (LEAP).
LEAP has earned approval from the Appraisal Institute to evaluate the energy efficiency of homes. The green appraisal addendum will assess anything and everything homeowners have done to go green.
"This is an excellent added value because it'll help the appraiser understand that these things that you may not even be able to see, such as the insulation or air ceiling, and so on, make your home more valuable than, say, the house right next door that has not made these improvements," said Fore.
Jim Duncan with Nest Realty thinks this can expand the "green" movement.
"Energy Efficiency Addendum is a way to take the energy efficiency improvements more mainstream, more people knowing about it, and an official implementation of energy efficiency quantification, it's going to make it a very valuable tool going forward," said Duncan.
LEAP completes the assessment for $250 and for customers of Dominion Virginia power, there are some added perks. Those homeowners will get free installations of more green energy. The program applies to residential and commercial homeowners.