Islanders can learn about home weatherization options at a meeting today

Home weatherization experts and representatives from Puget Sound Cooperative Credit Union will lead a forum this evening on weatherization and how to afford it.

Greg Kruse, an Island contractor who specializes in energy efficiency, will discuss various costs associated with weatherization, and Mark Musick will talk about Puget Sound Energy’s HomePrint enery audit program. Shannon Ellis-Brock of Puget Sound Cooperative Credit Union (PSCCU) will discuss financing weatherization projects through PSCCU’s home energy efficiency loans.

The Bellevue-based credit union is hoping to open a branch on Vashon Island by next summer, at the behest of Credit Union Vashon volunteers, who have been pursuing opening a credit union on Vashon for several months.

“This is an opportunity for people to understand that PSCCU is lending on Vashon, and they see weatherization as an important part of their lending,” said Rex Stratton, one of the Vashon credit union organizers.

In fact, PSCCU’s weatherization loans impressed Vashon’s credit union organizers when the parties began talking last summer.

“They were interested in making the loans affordable. …They were willing to make the terms of their loans fit the economic realities of weatherization,” Stratton said.

Borrowers can take as long as 15 years to repay their energy efficiency loans, according to Ellis-Brock. This length of time is rare, if not unique, among lending institutions, and it allows people to make energy improvements and have their loan payments be equal to the monthly savings the improvements create, she said.

The presentation will be from 7 to 9 p.m. in the courtroom in Courthouse Square. Preceding the weatherization presentation there will be a discussion with PSCCU representatives on the credit union’s home financing and refinancing options from 3 to 5 p.m. The public is welcome at that session as well.

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