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A warmer home with lower bills
CEA performed a Home Energy Check on the home of Kaiapoi resident Dyanne and installed subsidised insulation in her home, making a huge difference to her life.
“I used to pay $78 a fortnight on smoothpay, now I am paying only $49 and I am still in credit over $400!” Dyanne enthusiastically shows the impact on her power bill since CEA insulated her Kaiapoi home. And it is not just the bill that has changed. “The house is much warmer,” she says.
Dyanne lives alone with a few furry and feathery friends, and the cold also affected her relationships with other people.
“People knew my house was cold. They always came with lots of clothes on. I didn’t put the heat pump on because it was too expensive. I couldn’t heat the house.”
If her granddaughter was staying with her, the little girl would always get sick after a few days. But last time she said when waking up: “Grandma, it was nice and warm.”
Her daughter who lives next door used to say: “ ‘I am going back to my own warm house now.’ She stays much longer now!’ Dyanne says with a smile.
Dyanne bought the Kaiapoi house after selling her earthquake-damaged home in Christchurch at a loss. “This was all I could afford. I love Kaiapoi though.”
She shares the house with border collie Opal, black cat Lucky and Dasher, the budgee.
Her daughter had heating installed with the Warmer Kiwi Homes subsidy and told her to investigate. “I said to her, I don’t qualify.” But her daughter insisted: “Mum, you do! Let me apply for you.” And she did. A few days later an email from CEA confirmed Dyanne’s eligibility. “I couldn’t believe I qualified! I was so wrapped. It felt I had won the Lotto!”
The CEA assessor had a look in the ceiling and told her only part of the lounge was insulated and there was nothing in other parts of the house. And measuring up insulation wasn’t all he did. The heat pump was not installed in the most ideal place and as a result the appliance struggled to heat the place properly and for the heat to reach the dining and kitchen area of the open plan house.
“He made a couple of tweaks and said it would make a lot of difference. And it did!” Finally the heat pump was able to warm up the whole open plan area. And with the house now properly insulated, running the heat pump was affordable.
“I am not scared to use the heat pump anymore!” Dyanne laughs.
“I get sick with bronchitis every year. I still got bronchitis last winter but now I can get up and have the heat pump on. Before, I needed to stay in bed all day to keep warm.
Dyanne is still working but only a few years away from retirement. “When I retire and am home every day, it will make a huge difference!”
“It’s the best thing my daughter ever ‘forced’ me into!”