Melissa Jennings and Ryan Dunleavy purchased their 1969 Colchester ranch home in 2019. From the start, they knew that energy improvements would be an important part of their renovation plan and were willing to do what it took to bring their drafty 1960s house into the energy efficient 21st century.
Prior to purchasing the home, Melissa and Ryan had done their homework. They attended workshops, determined solar potential with SunCommon and researched rebate programs through Efficiency Vermont. Says Melissa, "As soon as we were comfortable that we understood our options, we made a call to Paul Fleckenstein at the Energy Co-op to schedule an energy audit."
Paul was able to do a thorough analysis that identified key areas of their home that should be targeted for energy improvement. Like many older homes, solutions included insulating and sealing the attic, basement rim joists and exterior foundation walls. Because their plan also included installing ground mounted solar panels, mechanical improvements that increased their electricity usage were recommended including new bathroom exhaust fans, two cold-climate heat pumps and a heat pump hot water heater.
The result? A charming mid-century home well on its way to reaching a goal of "net zero" energy usage. Melissa said, "We felt it was important for us to do what we could to support a renewable energy economy. We had the know-how and financial resources to make changes and are happy to do our part to reduce our household fossil fuel use and help the planet."
Next up for Melissa and Ryan's home - updating the vintage cedar siding with a new coat of paint and reducing three different trim colors to one!