We live in a house built in the 1920's, in New Jersey (suburban Philadelphia). We bought it a couple of years ago. We have an oil burning furnace that was installed in 2004, and we installed a wood burning stove in the dining room / kitchen last year. We have been having a lot of trouble with the heater, and it seems like it might be time to replace it - but I would really like to get away from oil. There's no natural gas on our street. Geothermal would likely be problematic, as we are on a creek and the township probably won't issue a permit. My long term goal is a rocket mass heater in our living room to heat that half of the house, but we need to do some renovations first (knock down a wall to combine the tiny living room with a tiny bedroom). That isn't likely to happen soon.
Energy systems tend to confuse me. Give me a plant or animal any day. Perhaps there is an easy solution I'm missing? Or maybe it's an impossible problem. But if anyone can solve it, all of the smart people on the permies site can.