What rebates am I eligible for?
While 80 Massachusetts cities and towns are included in the Mass Energy Heat Pump Program, not all of them are eligible for the state's Mass Save and MassCEC incentives. Read on for more information on what you are and aren't eligible for.
80 cities and towns in the Greater Boston area will be able to take advantage of the competitive pricing offered by installers in the Mass Energy Heat Pump Program. However, residents in some of these municipalities might not be able to receive some of the incentives offered by the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (MassCEC) and Mass Save. If you live in an area served by a municipal lighting plant (Belmont, Boxborough, Braintree, Concord, Groton, Hudson, Littleton, Mansfield, N. Attleboro, Norwood, Stow, and Wellesley), you will not be eligible for the Mass Save incentive and will only be eligible for the MassCEC incentive if you currently heat with electric resistance heat—and only if your installation is completed by June 30, 2016.
Not Taxpayer Funded
Unlike the federal tax credit that any American consumer can take advantage of, the energy-related rebates provided by MassCEC and by Mass Save are ratepayer funded. These rebates are funded from specific charges on your electricity bill that are only levied on your account if your electric utility is participating in these ratepayer funded programs.
Mass Save rebates are funded by an Energy Conservation charge of $0.0025 (1/4 of one cent) per kWh on customer electrical bills. If you see a line item on your electrical bill under Delivery Services that says "Energy Conservation" or you receive electricity from National Grid or Eversource, you are eligible for Mass Save rebates.
MassCEC rebates are funded by the Renewable Energy Trust Fund, which is funded by a charge of $0.00049 per kWh (less than 1/10 of one cent!) on customer electrical bills. If you see a line item on your electrical bill under Delivery Services that says "Renewable Energy" or you receive electricity from National Grid or Eversource, you are eligible for MassCEC rebates. Extra rebates are available for low and moderate income customers (click here for more information).
Exception for electric resistance heating customers
Homeowners heating with electric resistance heat will on average pay the highest heating bills every winter. Therefore, homeowners in municipal lighting plant territories who heat with electric resistance heat will be able to take advantage of the MassCEC rebate. If your household makes less than 80% of the state median income, you will also be eligible for an extra large incentive (click here for more information).
However, this exception will only last until June 30, 2016. While Mass Energy's Heat Pump Program is scheduled to end before then on June 15, customers that sign up near the end of the program may not get their installations completed until after the MassCEC deadline. If you do heat with electric resistance heat and live in a municipal light plant district, we encourage you to sign up as soon as possible.
Some incentives may still be available
Just because you live in one of the territories served by municipal lighting plants doesn't mean you're out of luck for all incentives, however. Any consumer in the US will be able to take advantage of the $300 federal tax credit for installing an ENERGY STAR-certified air source heat pump. Furthermore, many of the municipal light plants in the Greater Boston area offer grants, rebates, and low-cost financing for customers that install air source heat pumps.
Some of those municipal light plant programs include:
- Braintree Electric Light Department (BELD) EnergySmart Home Program: Provides rebates of up to $500 for heat pump installations
- Concord Municipal Light Plant - Residential Central AC Rebate Program: Provides rebates of up to $350 per ton of cooling (12,000 btu/hr) for heat pumps or central AC
- Groton Electric Light Department Heat Loan Program: Similar to the Mass Save HEAT Loan, provides 0% loan of up to $25,000 with up to 7 year term for heat pump installations
- Hudson Light & Power Department - Residential Heating/Cooling Rebate Program (includes Stow): Provides account credits of up to $500 for ENERGY STAR heat pump installations
Please note that some of these programs may be expired or have restrictions on eligibility. Please visit your municipal light department's website or contact them for more information on what rebates are available to you and what the prerequisites there are (if any) for accessing these rebates. Some municipal light departments include rebates for ENERGY STAR air conditioners that may also include heat pumps.