Habitat for Humanity of Flathead Valley has a history of building homes to high efficiency standards. Participating in BetterBuiltNW’s Next Step Home Pilot program helped them take their homes to the next level of efficiency and form a stronger partnership with Flathead Electric Cooperative.
The Perfect Next Step
Habitat for Humanity’s mission is to eliminate substandard housing. In a climate like Flathead County’s in Montana, where winters feature below-freezing temperatures for several months and summers get hot, this means making sure the homes they build stay comfortable. Habitat for Humanity embraced efficient building practices as a way to reduce energy bills for their families, who earn 30%–60% of the median income in the area.
Asking Habitat for Humanity to participate in the Next Step Home Pilot was a no-brainer for Flathead Electric Co-op Energy Services Representative David Bopp. “They were already at approximately 90% of the Next Step Home
standard,” said David. Habitat for Humanity jumped at the opportunity to go beyond their already rigorous building practices and prove that you can make a highly efficient home in cold weather climates – even with an all-volunteer crew.
In my mind, it's not that difficult to obtain some pretty good goals in terms using less energy without sacrificing any comport or quality of living.
- STEVE TARTAGLINO, CONSTRUCTION SITE SUPERVISOR, HABITAT FOR HUMANITY OF FLATHEAD VALLEY
Columbia Falls, Montana
Habitat for Humanity of Flathead Valley, Flathead Electric Cooperative