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Look for HOURCAR Street Team members Nicki and Paige handing out great swag at community events in your neighborhood.

Stop in the Eco Experience building at the Minnesota State Fair and learn how your home can be certified as an Energy Fit Home. Our booth is near the world's largest wad of paper.

HOURCAR members at the Little Mekong Night Market proudly show off their HOURCAR t-shirt and coffee mug.

Have you joined the NEC online social communities? Join the conversations and learn and share tips on how to reduce your carbon footprint.


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Summer 2014
Energy News You Can Use
The Neighborhood Energy Connection Newsletter
Energy Smart Homes


Due to the huge success of the Energy Smart Homes loan program, we ran out funds last March, but thanks to additional funds from the Saint Paul Neighborhood STAR program we are now accepting new applications.


Energy Smart Homes provides zero interest deferred loans for Saint Paul homeowners of all income levels looking to upgrade their home's energy efficiency, including: attic & wall insulation, air sealing, furnaces, boilers, water heaters, and electrical and/or ventilation work related to the improvements. No payments are required for 15 years or until the sale or refinance (with cash back) of the home. Loans up to $6,500 are available. Borrowers match the financing 1:1 with cash toward the project or other home improvements. Household incomes below 80% Area Median income do not require matching funds.


We will also connect you to additional rebates to maximize your savings.


Homeowners in Ramsey County (outside of Saint Paul) and across the state of Minnesota, you haven't been left out. Check out our Home Energy Financing page to find a financing option that fits you.


Learn more and apply by contacting contact LeAnne at or 651.789.5706.




What's Your Energy Fitness Score?


Whether you are buying, selling, or just staying put, it's never been more important to know a home's energy efficiency. Designed specifically for existing residential properties, our Energy Fitness Score (pictured below) provides a snapshot of the energy performance level of your home, and determines if you qualify for Energy Fit Homes certification. Once you know how a house stacks up against energy performance standards, you can make wise, cost-effective upgrades to improve its energy efficiency - a benefit to your family, your wallet and your environment.


Energy Fit Homes makes having an energy efficient home easier and more rewarding than ever.  Energy experts will answer your questions and provide you with information to make smart energy improvement choices. Be confident you're working with a skilled, reliable contractor. Once you've successfully completed all the energy improvement recommendations, your home will be certified as an Energy Fit Home.



The assessment is very affordable thanks to subsidies from utility conservation programs.  


St. Paul and eastern suburbs,  CLICK HERE to schedule a home assessment.
Minneapolis and western suburbs,  CLICK HERE to schedule a home assessment. 


Outside of the metro, call 612.335.3483 or email for more information.


Energy Fit Homes is a program of the Neighborhood Energy Connection and Center for Energy and Environment.


Energy Fit Homes at the State Fair


Stop in the Eco Experience   building at the Minnesota State Fair and visit us at the Energy Fit Homes booth where you can find out your home's preliminary energy fit score. NEC and CEE staff will be available to help walk you through a short energy fit homes analysis and answer any questions you may have about the program.  


Look for our booth next to the 32 different CFL and LED bulbs interactive display and not far from the the world's largest wad of paper.  


Image via Minnesota Pollution Control Agency
A Snapshot Look at Understanding Home Energy


The NEC's Home Energy Program Director Rebecca Olson took part in the filming of a two-minute video short explaining what it means to have an energy-efficient home, debunking home energy myths, and how to be a more informed and empowered homeowner.  


The video short is a lead-in to a longer 30-minute production which goes in depth into topics like Home Performance, energy assessments, making improvements, post-improvement inspections and final results.


The video short can be seen on Twin Cities Public Television (TPT) through the month of August between programs. It can also be viewed on the NEC's website. The final 30-minute program will air on TPT mid-2015.


The production was funded by the Department of Commerce Division of Energy Resources in cooperation with TPT, Minnesota Building Performance Association and the Neighborhood Energy Connection.



HOURCAR Expansion


To date, HOURCAR has grown to 73 vehicles located at 63 hubs throughout Minneapolis and Saint Paul!  We recently completed a year-long expansion made possible in part from grants from the Central Corridor Funders Collaborative and The McKnight Foundation. Together with our expansion at the University of Minnesota, we doubled the size of our fleet in one year. Our efforts moving forward are to increase membership while continuing to support and promote the car-free and car-light lifestyle.



HOURCAR on the Green Line


HOURCAR now has six locations on central corridor between Raymond Ave and and Dale St. To celebrate, we are waiving the $50 application fee for anyone who lives along the Green Line in Saint Paul. If you live near the Green Line between 280 and Rice Street, join now to take advantage of this great offer and gain access to HOURCAR's fleet of cars and trucks. Visit our website for more information.



HOURCAR on Greater MSP Business 


Earlier this month, HOURCAR Program Manager Megan Hansen sat down with Cindy Brucato, host of Greater MSP Business, to talk about about car sharing in the Twin Cities. To watch the interview,  CLICK HERE.  




Neighborhood Energy Connection | 1754 University Avenue West | Saint Paul, MN 55104 | 651.221.4462 |

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