Program Description

The Low Income Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP) provides eligible households with full-scale home energy conservation services.

The Energy Conservation Unit (ECU) within the Department of Housing & Community Development's (DHCD) Division of Community Services (DCS), has administrative, programmatic, and fiscal oversight of the U. S. Department of Energy (DOE) funded program. The Weatherization Assistance Program is operated locally by a network of 12 community-based organizations across the Commonwealth under contract with DHCD.

How it Works:

The Weatherization Assistance Program helps low-income households reduce their heating bills by providing full-scale home energy conservation services. Services provided by the program result in a more comfortable, safe home and a permanent improvement in the lives of occupants. The program is operational year round. The actual conservation work completed is dependent on the specific needs of the home.

After a household is determined eligible, the local agency schedules an energy inspection of the home. A DOE Certified Energy Auditor completes a full inspection of the energy and health and safety concerns of the home and completes a Work Order/Job Write-Up. Local private-sector weatherization contractors are hired to complete the work at no cost to the occupants. Typical work includes air sealing, attic and/or sidewall insulation, weather-stripping, and minor repairs associated with the weatherization work. Heating system work, if needed, is typically referred to HEARTWAP, a separate program administered by ECU. All work receives a thorough Quality Control inspection by the local agency's Energy Auditor. To the greatest extent possible, work is coordinated with any utility-funded Demand Side Management (DSM) programs that may be available in the area.

Who is Eligible:

Households with incomes that do not exceed 60% of the Estimated State Median Income may be eligible for the Weatherization Assistance Program. Program eligibility is based on household eligibility for the LIHEAP program. In addition, those households with a member receiving TAFDC or SSI are categorically eligible. Due to limited funding, priority points are awarded to households with members who are elderly, handicapped, children under 7, or Native Americans. Households with exceptionally high energy bills may also receive priority of service. Tenants (with landlord approval) as well as homeowners are eligible for weatherization.

Application Process:

Applicants must apply and be determined eligible for Federal LIHEAP (Fuel Assistance) to be eligible for the Weatherization Assistance Program. The Head of Household may apply to the local LIHEAP agency. Applicants are required to provide household income information

Grants:

Weatherization services vary depending on the specific needs of the home and DOE approved conservation measures. An average grant of $5,500 is awarded for each home for installed energy efficiency measures. No client contribution is required.

For More Information:

Please contact DHCD's Division of Community Services at 617-573-1400, or toll free at 1-800-632-8175.