Locals Tour ‘Cool' Green Home

San Diegans took a tour Saturday of a high-performance home in Scripps Ranch.

Proud homeowner Tony Beecher welcomed dozens of people to his energy-efficient home in Scripps Ranch on Saturday morning.

The open house was sponsored by the California Center for Sustainable Energy (CCSE), an independent, nonprofit organization that accelerates the adoption of clean and efficient energy solutions via consumer education, market facilitation and policy innovation.

Beecher recently went “green” and decided to upgrade his home. He had air-sealing done in all of the walls and ceilings, and insulation work in the roof.

The home improvements were installed through the statewide in Energy Upgrade California Home Upgrade initiative.

Beecher said one of his favorite perks is the installation of his new remote control high-efficiency pool equipment.

Although Beecher said he paid around $37,000 for all the energy-efficient upgrades in his house, he recommends people just “do the math” to figure out how much money they can save by going green.

“There are lots of rebates you can get back. I think we got $1,500 for the Chevy Volt. On the solar power we got a federal rebate of $11,000 in federal tax credits, which was really awesome,” he recalled.

He also mentioned his electricity bill has gone down significantly since he made the change.

“Before I was running $230 to $250 a month, and now I’m running $5 a month after putting the solar in,” he explained.

He said he has only turned on the air conditioner once since going green a year ago.

“With the solar I can use the air conditioning whenever I want because it does not cost me anything. I'm currently producing more electricity than I'm using," he explained.

“Now the house is sitting at a constant temperature. It doesn’t raise or lower like it did before. Our house just stays the same because it’s all sealed up,” said Beecher.

Beecher confirmed the upgrades will pay for themselves in about seven years.

On Saturday, visitors at the open house not only got the chance to meet with Beecher, they were also able to talk to people from the CCSE about energy efficiency and the advantages of making home energy improvements.

The CCSE Program Assistant, Michael Arvizu, said there’s a lot more to keeping a home cool than an air conditioning system.

“A lot of people are thinking that the air conditioner is running. It’s really air sealing and insulation that is the foundation of this program,” Arvizu explained.

Arvizu also talked to visitors about the cost of “going green.”

“I can say that our average project cost for an energy upgrade in California is between $9,000 and $12,000, with a $2,500 to $3,000 rebate,” he said.

For more details about green home upgrades, visit this website.

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