Maine CUs Offering Special Fuel/Energy Loans To Help Mainers Afford To Stay Warm This Winter

November 25, 2013

The arrival of considerably colder weather means that heating their home is now a higher priority for thousands of Maine people.  With the government predicting that most households will pay more for heat this winter, how to pay for heating expenses remains a challenge for many Mainers.  Recently, the Maine Credit Union League surveyed Maine's 61 credit unions and found that more than two-thirds of the state's credit unions are offering low or no interest fuel loans for the winter.  Collectively, Maine's credit unions, representing every region of the state, have set aside millions to fund loans that are dedicated to special fuel lending offers.  More than half of the state’s credit unions offering fuel loans lend, on average, between $2,000-$4,000 per borrower.  

For the winter of 2013/14, members of most Maine credit unions will have an opportunity to obtain a special fuel loan.  Rates on these loans range from 0% to about 5%, with the average rate of these loans at about 3.9%.  In addition to special fuel loans, some credit unions in Maine are also offering special loans for wood stoves including installations, weatherization loans and discounted loans for energy efficiency projects.  Some credit unions are not only making these loans available for homeowners but for renters, as well.

"Keeping warm remains a significant economic hardship for many Mainers.  Maine’s credit unions continue to work with consumers to offer creative and low-cost ways to help people stay warm during challenging times," remarked John Murphy, President of the Maine Credit Union League, adding, “Offering these special loans at special rates makes a big difference to many people; Maine’s credit unions have a long commitment of focusing on helping their members and helping those who are feeling the crunch from high oil prices and energy costs is yet another example.”