Dear Occupant:

What conditions were present when a customer had an Aha moment?  What made the communication successful?  Please share your successes here so we can all learn.  'Cause we know that houses don't use energy.  People Do!


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Comment by Andrew Aliferis on March 26, 2013 at 4:33am

I recently audited a townhouse for a young family. The father had his baby strapped to the front of his chest in a baby carrier. As we spoke he bounced gently up and down to comfort the baby who was trying to sleep. I was asking him about comfort issues in the house. He told me that the first floor was always cold in the winter and nonchalantly said that he uses a kerosene heater down there to heat it up. He noticed my concern and said quickly that he grew up with kerosene heaters and knew how to use them safely. I explained how easily a piece of rust or poor adjustment could cause the heater to start generating carbon monoxide and how even if him and his wife only experienced headaches, their baby could die. The aha moment came very quickly when he thought about losing his child.

Comment by A. Tamasin Sterner on November 1, 2011 at 3:04am
I've been using "family" lately.  It seems to resonate well.
Comment by Timothy DeLuca on October 31, 2011 at 9:34pm
I always use the term "home".
Comment by Timothy DeLuca on October 31, 2011 at 9:31pm

Most of the time it is when I uncover a health and safety issue regarding combustion appliances. This is a great opportunity to provide education. 

The blower door is a great time to give lessons about CO and exhaust systems if the home is tight.

I always love a homeowner that shows interest and follows me around.

Comment by John Nicholas on April 4, 2011 at 1:35pm

I use family, children, kids, wife, husband - or if I have learned them, the names.  This morning is was Annabelle, their 3 year old.  She helped by holding my extra flashlight. <GRIN>


I also start with house, but quickly move to home - especially with the ladies. In the basement or attic with the guys I revert to house.


BTW:  I use ladies and guys here generically.  I've had stay at home dads that are more interested in the hominess and the wife is more interested in the construction or technical aspects.  I also had a little wife, 5-0 80# that did all the remodel work.  She relegated her Policeman husband to doing the heavy lifting.  She did not left him, hammer or paint, glue or run power tools. 

Comment by A. Tamasin Sterner on April 4, 2011 at 1:05pm
While visiting with Carol Markell from Home Energy Magazine at ACI last week, she said she prefers "resident" to "occupant", but really likes "people".  What word or term do YOU use when you refer to the folks in the house/apartment that you are serving?

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