Home Energy Use and Affordability 

A social model to support consistent and affordable utility payments from the low-income customer and a financial model to reduce the 10’s of millions of dollars in annual uncollectable debt from the utility provider.


The Problem  

Millions of low-income Americans are unable to consistently pay their monthly utility bills. The inability to pay results in deepened personal financial crisis, home utility disconnections and the annual cycling of seeking publicly supported energy assistance. Utility companies face exorbitant uncollectible debt from their low-income customers resulting in increased rates for all and an unfavorable public perception from the communities they serve. Influencing the problem is poor housing stock in urban environments that is highly inefficient to heat and the absence of a relationship between home energy used and the amount of energy consumed. 

The Solution

Align a state and utility company approved affordable low-income monthly payment plan to segmented low-income utility customers with effective social service self-sufficiency and financial coaching interventions that include energy-use education and energy efficient products that result in increased awareness of personal energy consumption and decreased usage. The cost delta between the home energy consumed and the low-income monthly plan is progressively satisfied by federal and state energy assistance grants over the term of the program.

The Impact

Effective financial and self-sufficient interventions to low-income customers prevents utility disconnections, personal crisis and empowers the low-income customer to manage their income and assets and grow out of poverty. Reduction of poverty decreases federal and state public assistance appropriations. Consistent monthly customer payments increases revenues for utility companies by reducing their uncollectible debt.