Landlord Energy Upgrades

If you own a rental property, you can benefit from energy efficiency upgrades.  Whether you pay your utility bills or your tenants pay them, there are programs to subsidize energy upgrades.  Often, these upgrades are a win-win, as they save money, create comfort and lead to a better working relationship with tenants.

In order for a landlord to quality for financial assistance supporting whole house energy upgrades, they need to collect income information from all the residents in a property. 

A landlord who doesn’t occupy the property uses only the income of all tenants.  An owner-occupied property means adding the income of the landlord’s household and all tenants.

Landlord Situation 1: Weatherization Assistance Program and EmPower

You may be eligible for a no-cost home energy assessment and significantly reduced-cost upgrades through the Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP) and the EmPower New York Program if you and/or your tenants meet program income requirements.  If you qualify you should apply for both programs.

Don’t qualify for WAP or EmPower?  Learn how you can get an energy assessment at reduced or no-cost through the Home Performance with Energy Star®

Landlord Situation 2: Home Performance with Energy Star® Program

(For income levels below 400% AMI)

You may be eligible for a reduced or no-cost home energy assessment through NYSERDA’s Home Performance with Energy Star®  Program.  Here’s how to apply:

Step 1: See if you are eligible.  You must be the owner of a 1-4 unit residential building with a total household income at or below the level shown on page 2 of the program application linked below. 

Step 2: Submit a Program Application.  

1) Download the program application and fill out the applicant information.  

2) Determine your household income range based on area median income (AMI).  Find your income on the table found on page 2 of the application and check off the corresponding box on your application. 

3) Fill out Energy Supplier Information.  Request 12-24 months of usage history by calling or e-mailing NYSEG and your heating fuel provider.

4) Sign the bottom and submit to the address indicated. If you have already chosen a contractor, list the contractor. If not, leave this section blank.  

You should hear back from NYSERDA within 1-2 weeks after submitting your application.  If approved you will receive an energy assessment reservation number to give to your contractor.  

Landlord Situation 3: Pay Out of Pocket

If you do not qualify for a reduced or no-cost assessment, or just want to skip the paperwork, it is still worthwhile for you to upgrade your property for energy efficiency.  Prospective tenants are looking for more comfortable apartments with lower energy bills.  An energy efficient apartment is a big marketing advantage.

Contact a BPI-accredited contractor to schedule a home energy assessment. Assessments typically cost $300-$500. Usually, if you hire the same contractor who performs your energy assessment, they typically refund the cost of the assessment.


Last updated April 12, 2020