Oregon Department of Energy Seeking Eligible Contractors for New Rental Home Heat Pump Program

OREGON – (Release from the Oregon Department of Energy) The Oregon Department of Energy is now registering eligible contractors to participate in the agency’s new Oregon Rental Home Heat Pump Program. Under this new program, owners of rental homes and manufactured dwellings or recreational vehicles in a rented space may qualify for a rebate for installing an eligible heat pump.

The heat pump program was established at ODOE by the Oregon Legislature (SB 1536) following the 2021 heat dome event, during which at least 100 Oregonians died of heat-related illness – often in their own homes. Heat pumps, which move heat rather than create it, are becoming more popular in Oregon homes thanks to their efficient heating and cooling, lower energy use, and potential incentive savings (including a federal tax credit).

Approved program contractors will be able to reserve rebates on behalf of their customers. After completing installation, the contractor will receive the rebate from the agency and the full amount of the savings must be passed on to the customer.

Approved contractors must meet program eligibility guidelines, including holding the appropriate license, bond, insurance, or permit; having an active license with the Construction Contractors Board; and having no Occupational Safety and Health Division violations for at least the past two years, among other requirements.

Interested Oregon contractors can register online to join the approved list. ODOE will hold an informational webinar for potential contractors on June 28 to learn more about the program and the online registration and reservation system. Contractors may apply at any time, and ODOE expects to publish an initial list of approved contractors by June 30, 2023. The agency will update the contractor list regularly.

“The Oregon Department of Energy is grateful to Oregon’s HVAC businesses and independent contractors for joining our effort to get energy efficient and potentially life-saving heat pumps into more of Oregon’s rental homes,” said ODOE Director Janine Benner. “We look forward to rolling this program out as soon as possible to benefit Oregonians across the state.”

Rebate amounts vary based on the project. For rental homes, rebates are available between $2,000 and $5,000, depending on the efficiency of the heat pump and the income level of the tenants. For a manufactured home or recreational vehicle renting space in a manufactured home or RV park, rebates are available between $2,000 and $7,000 depending on heat pump efficiency and income level.

Grants are also available for associated upgrades alongside the heat pumps, such as electrical wiring. For homes where tenants meet low- or moderate-income eligibility, up to a $4,000 rebate is available. For those who are not low- or moderate-income, up to $2,000 is available.

ODOE will announce in early summer when the program is fully open and accepting heat pump incentive reservations from approved contractors. Additional information is available on ODOE’s website.