Reduce Your Home’s Carbon Impact

April 22th, 2021
From unprecedented wildfires to a record-breaking hurricane season, climate change is increasing the intensity of weather events. The largest source of harmful greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S. comes from burning fossil fuels for heat, electricity, and transportation. Since the pandemic hit many of us drove less, as office buildings, schools and businesses closed their doors temporarily. Fewer vehicle emissions let our planet breathe, but it created another challenge –– a soaring demand for residential energy. From working remotely to distance learning to evenings at home, the average American household increased its electricity use by 22 percent . With the end of the pandemic now in sight, how can we

HVAC Tax Credits: What Energy Improvements Qualify?

March 26th, 2021
As part of an initiative to reduce America’s collective carbon footprint and the strain on limited resources, the U.S. government offers tax credits to homeowners who have made energy-efficient upgrades. In fact, many home improvements that will add value to your home are eligible for federal tax credits. If you’ve installed an Energy-Star certified HVAC system , you may be eligible for the Residential Energy Efficient Property Credit on your income taxes this year. Improving your home and saving on your income taxes, now that’s a win-win. But how do you take advantage of this tax incentive? Keep reading to learn whether your HVAC system qualifies and how you can

Adolphus M. Pruitt: Addressing the access-to-capital crisis for underserved St. Louis communities

March 20th, 2021
Attention to equity and inclusion for underserved communities of color is more pronounced today than ever. In recent reporting by Peabody Award-winning journalist Aaron Glantz, some stark statistics show that discriminatory lending practices still persist. For those in the African American community, this comes as no surprise. But readers may be surprised to learn that, shockingly, the gap between African American home ownership and white home ownership is wider today than in the Jim Crow era. In fact, systemic racial biases are essentially built-in to credit score algorithms and underwriting resulting in a continuing access-to-capital crisis for underserved communities. Communities of color are disproportionately denied for lending products such as