The Smart Home Kickstart Project has the goal to reduce high utility bills and improve quality of life through
The program is a dream come true for DeAndrea Salvador, a fifth-generation Charlottean who was inspired to get involved by memories of an elderly neighbor from her childhood fretting about how she could afford her monthly utility bill.
“Her husband at the time had a heart condition, and she was struggling to make sure he was comfortable,” Salvador said. “Just looking at my community and the effect that high energy burdens had led me down the path of research.”
RETI is one of the many partners and is providing support and training for the 33 households participating, as well as education for the broader community on energy-saving techniques.
For Salvador, the progress, though slow, has been rewarding to watch.
“I feel that this could be the launching point for other programs that the city of Charlotte can do around energy efficiency. These people are pioneers. There’s a level of excitement that comes with that.”
Lower utility bills will help participants remain in their homes and alleviate financial burdens. The Smart Home bundle included: Amazon Alexa, smart plugs, programmable thermostat, Halo smoke alarm, Amazon Prime, Smart Strip, Light Bulbs.
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