Natural Gas Expansion Into Darien Could Have Direct and Indirect Benefits — If You’re Along the Route
Homeowners along the four-mile route where Eversource is installing natural gas mains this summer and (possibly) fall can get a big discount on hookups, and then lower energy bills that would make back the initial investment of new equipment costs after 10 to 12 years, utility officials say. But there’s a bigger, indirect gain for every homeowner who switches from heating oil or propane to natural gas, and it’s not just utility officials who say so. That can come with higher home resale values, which by themselves could pay for the installation, aside from any utility-bill savings. The big financial gain for the 200 or so homeowners with property along the gas main routes could come when they sell their home, because homebuyers often pay more for homes heated by natural gas, according to some experts not affiliated with the industry. According to a 2012 study by a real estate business in the (colder) Boston area, natural gas in homes increased their sales value by $11 per square foot, or $22,000 for a 2,000-square-foot home (more information below).