Skip to Main Content

Success Story

Awetash Tsegay, Beaverton

Estimated annual bill savings: $230

When she moved into a subdivision constructed by Willamette West Habitat for Humanity, the dream of owning a house became reality for Awetash Tsegay, mother of Nathaniel, 16, and Bethlehem, 14, originally from Ethiopia. Dedicated to fostering home ownership by building affordable housing, Habitat works with low-income families, volunteers and donors to sell homes at cost to qualifying residents like Awetash.

After making a modest down payment and contributing 500 hours of construction “sweat equity,” Awetash purchased her three-bedroom house at 0 percent interest with a monthly payment structured to match her income. She doesn’t worry about high energy bills because Habitat worked with Energy Trust to make sure her home has a low EPS™, an energy performance score that indicates low energy consumption, utility costs and carbon footprint. Scores range from most efficient at zero to least efficient at 200. Thanks to energy-efficient design features, Awetash’s home has an EPS of only 32, and average monthly gas and electricity costs of $62, well below what is typical for an 1,100-square-foot house.

“I’m happy,” said Awetash. “The house stays comfortable year-round. I like the nice quiet neighborhood. And this home is ours.”

Learn more about EPS for newly built homes >