The Housing Alliance recently released a report to analyze the reach of Act 129 energy efficiency programs to low-income multifamily housing.
Multifamily housing is a critical part of the housing stock for low-income families – both in the forms of publicly subsidized housing and market rate housing. The purpose of this study was to understand the proportion of the low-income multifamily housing stock that has benefitted from the Act 129 Energy Efficiency and Conservation (EE&C) program during Program Year 10, Phase III.
Low-income households spend a greater portion of their incomes on energy costs, restricting their ability to meet other needs, such as food and education. Across the country,
More than half of all Americans now pay more than 30 percent of their income on rent and utilities, while millions more pay as much as half of their earnings on rent and utilities. Low-income families spend 20% or more of their income on energy alone.
Across Pennsylvania, households with incomes below 50 percent of the poverty level spend between 30 to 40 percent of their income on their energy bills. The Housing Alliance supports solutions that reduce housing costs in a responsible manner, so that families may also meet other critical financial needs such as healthcare, education, and food. The EE&C solutions can reduce energy usage and therefore, energy bills, and we want to make sure these valuable benefits are being implemented in low-income multifamily homes.
As an advocacy organization for programs and resources to support low-income families, it is important for us to know:
- What energy efficiency and conservation programs are offered to low-income families?
- If low-income families are accessing these programs and benefits and to what degree?
- If extremely low-income families and those accessing public housing assistance programs are benefitting from those energy efficiency and conservation programs?
 Source: Energy Efficiency for All