Many homeowners who buy new heating and air conditioning equipment are unaware of the fact that local utility companies often provide cash rebates to consumers. These cash rebates can be hundreds or thousands of dollars.
When Mavis Brenner found out that her 28 year old furnace had a cracked heat exchanger, the 87 year old retired school teacher began to panic. " I am on a fixed income and I am barely getting by" said Brenner. But help soon came from an unlikely source, the local gas company.
In Illinois almost all of the major natural gas providers and electric utilities have some type of cash rebate program for homeowners who wish to replace old and outdated equipment. Mrs. Brenner's HVAC contractor, Bucks Furnace & Air showed Brenner that by replacing her furnace, central air system and water heater together, she could take advantage of a utility rebate of $1500. These rebates are a way for the utility companies to encourage consumers to install higher efficiency furnaces and air conditioning equipment in their homes. The rebates never have to be paid back and there are no minimum or maximum income requirements. Ben Martorano of Bucks Furnace and Air in Palatine Illinois advises customers to educate themselves on what types of rebates they are eligible for before obtaining quotes for new equipment. "The rebates are always changing as the program funding changes" says Martorano "so it is really important that you hire a contractor who is up to date on these things".
Since not every furnace or AC unit will qualify for a rebate, choosing a contractor who understands the programs is a must. As for Mrs. Brenner, Bucks Furnace & Air helped her to obtain an additional $1100 rebate from American Standard, the equipment manufacturer, on top of the utility rebates Her new equipment is projected to save her around $500 annually on her utility bills. "I couldn't be happier" says Brenner "things really worked out well".