Brad Pitt’s Make It Right houses are challenging the way New Orleans homeowners think about solar energy

“Before settling back on Tennessee Street, Ann Parfaite heard from neighbors that her future home, loaded with green building features like solar panels and rain-water collectors, would help cut her electricity bills by a third or more.

“The Times-PicayuneSolar panels on the roof of Make It Right houses in the 9th Ward significantly reduce energy bills.

“I was hoping they were telling me the truth,” said Parfaite, who purchased a three-bedroom, two-bath home last year in Brad Pitt’s Make It Right development in the Lower 9th Ward, built in the same place Parfaite had lived for more than four decades until her home was destroyed when Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans five years ago,

Her neighbors, it turns out, were right.

Parfaite says her monthly power costs are a fraction of what she used to pay. Last month, her power bill hovered around $80. In cooler months like April and May, or October and November, when temperatures begin to level out, her bills stay around $40.

Solar panels on the roof of Make It Right houses in the 9th Ward significantly reduce energy bills. Photo credit: Times-Picayune

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