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Savings Within Reach

Increased incentives for income-qualified households

Energy-saving home improvements can help lower your energy bills, and you don’t need a big budget to get started. Savings Within Reach helps make home energy upgrades more affordable for income-qualified households. With increased cash incentives on qualifying projects, you’ll spend less on energy-saving projects and enjoy a more comfortable home.

  1. Establish your eligibility.

    Read More >

    You must live in Oregon and heat your home with electricity or natural gas provided by Portland General Electric, Pacific Power, NW Natural, Cascade Natural Gas or Avista. Additional requirements apply; check the Details tab for additional requirements.

  2. Contact an Energy Trust of Oregon trade ally contractor trained to provide Savings Within Reach services.

    Your contractor will provide a bid for eligible upgrades.

  3. Prior to beginning improvements, your contractor will ask you to sign an Income Verification form to confirm your eligibility.

    All improvements must be installed by an approved Energy Trust trade ally trained to provide Savings Within Reach services.

  4. After installation, your contractor will submit your signed incentive application.

    Your Income Verification form and invoices for your energy-efficient improvements will also be submitted to Energy Trust. Incentives will be paid directly to your contractor, who will deduct the incentive amount from your invoice, reducing your out-of-pocket costs. You are responsible for paying the balance of the invoice.

In addition to the eligibility requirements listed in the Steps tab, to participate you must live in a single-family home, manufactured home or multifamily residence that is either an attached side-by-side unit or a duplex, triplex or fourplex.  Stacked structures with five or more units are only eligible for the ductless heat pump and heat pump water heater incentives. You must also meet Energy Trust’s income qualifications listed below.

Please note: If you live in a rental property, the homeowner or property owner must approve work before it begins.

Household sizeGross annual income minimumGross annual income maximum
1 resident$25,520$51,966
2 residents$34,480$67,955
3 residents$43,440$83,945
4 residents$52,400$99,934
5 residents$61,360$115,922
6 residents$70,320$131,912
7 residents$79,280$134,910
8 residents$88,240$137,909

Temporary Eligibility

Employment Status COVID-19 Impacts
You may qualify if your employment was impacted by COVID-19 and you are eligible to receive assistance from one or more of the following:

  • Local, state and/or federal agencies
  • A community-based emergency fund

This eligibility extension is available July 1, 2020 through December 31, 2020.

For qualification questions or more information regarding Savings Within Reach, call 1.866.368.7878.

Upgrade Incentive Requirements
Attic insulation $0.50 $1.25 per square foot

Amount listed includes limited-time bonus incentive. Installation must be completed between September 1, 2020 – March 31, 2021.

If existing condition is R-11 or less, insulate to R-38.

Wall insulation $0.50 per square foot

Exterior wall insulation:
If existing condition is R-4 or less, insulate to R-11 or fill wall cavity; all heated exterior wall surfaces must be insulated.

Knee wall insulation:
If existing condition is R-4 or less, insulate to R-15 for 2×4 cavities; R-21 for 2×6 cavities; cover attic side of wall with vapor permeable air barrier. Please note: Attic insulation must be R-19 or higher in order for knee wall insulation to be eligible for an incentive.

Rim joist insulation:
If existing condition is R-4 or less, insulate to R-15 or fill cavity.

Floor insulation $0.40 per square foot

If R-0, insulate to R-30 or fill cavity.

Heat pump controls $250

Controls must either have an outdoor temperature sensor and be configured with a 35°F furnace lockout, or be a qualified web-enabled model that is connected to the internet. This incentive can be combined with the $1,000 heat pump incentive.

Efficient heat pump $1,000

Minimum efficiency heating seasonal performance factor (HSPF) 8.5.

Incentive is only available for homes upgrading from electric furnace, baseboard, wall heater or ceiling heat.

Ductless heat pump* $1,000

Minimum efficiency HSPF 9.0.

Compressor must be inverter driven. Incentive is only available for homes replacing electric resistance heat or electric furnace as primary heat source.

High-efficiency gas furnace $550 $1,000

Amount listed includes limited-time bonus incentive. Installation must be completed between September 1, 2020 – March 31, 2021.

Furnace must be home’s primary heating source.

90% annual fuel utilization efficiency (AFUE) or greater. Gas furnaces used as backup for heat pumps, also known as hybrid systems, are not eligible.

Heat pump water heater tier 3* $270

Eligible models must meet Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance’s (NEEA’s) Advanced Water Heater Specification Tier 3 and replace an existing electric water heater to qualify for this cash incentive. Tank may be any size.

*Please note: Stacked structures with five or more units are eligible for the ductless heat pump and heat pump water heater incentives only.

Special qualification rules and restrictions apply. Incentives are subject to funding availability and may change.

Incentives are not intended to influence consumer decisions on fuel sources.

You may qualify for certain upgrades at no cost from your local Community Action Agency based on your income. Visit oregon.gov to find a Community Action Agency near you.

Download our Savings Within Reach fact sheet.

Do I need multiple bids from a contractor for my energy improvement projects?

Energy Trust recommends getting at least three bids from contractors, but it is not a requirement to participate. To participate in Savings Within Reach On-Bill Repayment, your contractor must be a trained Energy Trust trade ally contractor approved to offer Savings Within Reach. Approved contractors can be found using our Find a Contractor tool. Energy Trust is also happy to send you three approved contractors if you would like.

Am I still eligible for other Energy Trust incentives if I participate in Savings Within Reach?

Yes. If you invest in additional energy-saving improvements, you can receive standard Energy Trust incentives. However, each improvement is eligible for only one incentive. For example, if you install wall insulation, you must choose either the Savings Within Reach incentive or the standard Energy Trust incentive. With Savings Within Reach, the incentive is paid to your contractor and provided as a line-item discount on your invoice.

To receive standard incentives for a project that is not part of Savings Within Reach, you will pay your contractor in full and then submit your incentive application and invoices to Energy Trust to receive your cash incentive.

I own a small multifamily property with four or fewer units and I am installing a ductless heat pump in one of the units and floor insulation in the entire building. Does this project qualify for Savings Within Reach incentives?

Ductless heat pump or equipment upgrades that are made in individual units can qualify for Savings Within Reach incentives by using the income of the property owner or the income of the tenant residing in the unit where the energy upgrade is being installed.

For upgrades that are completed throughout the entire building to qualify, like insulation, the income verification must be for the property owner or for every tenant household.

How do I determine my household’s gross annual income to see if I qualify for Savings Within Reach?

Your gross annual income is the total amount currently earned annually by all household members before taxes and deductions. Income includes all gross wages, tips, rental income, public assistance, social security or pensions, income from self-employment, alimony, or any other sources of income defined by the IRS income tax return.

Here is a sample income calculation:

$15 hourly wage x 32 hours per week x 52 weeks per year = $24,960.

Can I participate in Savings Within Reach if my household income is below the minimum income level?

Yes. However, if your gross income is below the minimum income level for your household size, you may qualify for free weatherization services from Oregon’s Weatherization Assistance Program, which is administered by Oregon Housing and Community Services. For more information, call 1.800.453.5511, option 2, or contact your local Community Action Agency. (Please note: You are not required to use these services to participate in Savings Within Reach.)

Who counts as a resident of my home?

Anyone who regularly sleeps at your home and is not considered a temporary guest can be counted as a resident of your home. Children sleeping in your home as part of a shared custody agreement are considered residents.

My employment was impacted due to COVID-19. Can I qualify for Savings Within Reach incentives?

You can qualify for Savings Within Reach if you or a contributing member of your household was laid off or furloughed due to COVID-19 and are eligible to receive assistance from either:

  • Local, state and/or federal government agencies
  • Community-based emergency fund grant systems

Examples of these programs include:

  • Oregon Department of Employment’s Unemployment Insurance (UI) Benefits
  • Pandemic Unemployment Assistance Program (PUA)
  • Federal program offering benefits to self-employed, contract and gig workers
  • Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) benefit
  • Additional $600 of benefits in addition to other unemployment benefits
  • Wage replacement emergency fund for culturally specific communities, which are not eligible to receive public benefits such as the Oregon Worker Relief Fund (which serves immigrant communities)
  • A wage replacement emergency fund for culturally specific communities of the state that are not eligible to receive public benefits, such as:
    • The Valentine Fund, serving the artist community
    • COVID-19 Oregon Musicians Relief Fund

I was out of work in 2020 due to COVID-19 and received unemployment benefits but I am now employed. Can I still qualify for Savings Within Reach Incentives?

You can qualify for Savings Within Reach if you or a contributing member of your household was laid off or furloughed due to COVID-19 and are/were eligible to receive assistance from either:

  • Local, state and/or federal government agencies
  • Community-based emergency fund grant systems

I was out of work in 2020 and have been unable to find work due to COVID-19. Can I still Qualify for Savings Within Reach incentives?

You can qualify for Savings Within Reach if you or a contributing member of your household’s employment status was further impacted by COVID-19 and are/were eligible to receive assistance from either:

  • Local, state and/or federal government agencies
  • Community-based emergency fund grant systems

I am self-employed—may I still qualify for Savings Within Reach under the new guidelines?

As long as a household member’s unemployment is connected to the COVID-19 pandemic, self-employed contract and gig workers are eligible to participate in Savings Within Reach through December 31, 2020.

How do I participate in Savings Within Reach now that my job has been affected due to COVID-19?

Your installation must be completed by a Savings Within Reach approved trade ally contractor between July 1, 2020 and December 31, 2020. To find Savings Within Reach qualified trade ally contractors, you may visit Energy Trust’s Find a Trade Ally Contractor tool and search by Savings Within Reach and your zip code.

Once you select a Savings Within Reach approved trade ally contractor, inform your contractor you would like to participate in Savings Within Reach. They will fill out the forms for you to sign; you will need to indicate your employment status on the Income Verification form.

The Savings Within Reach incentive will be paid directly to your contractor, who will deduct the incentive amount from your invoice, reducing your out-of-pocket costs. You are responsible for paying the balance of the invoice. Your trade ally will submit all forms on your behalf.

My unemployment claim was denied—may I still participate in Savings Within Reach?

As long as you are eligible to receive benefits through unemployment benefits, wage replacement or relief funds due to COVID-19, you qualify.

If you are eligible to receive benefits through wage replacement or relief funds due to COVID-19, you qualify.

I have not been able to apply for unemployment benefits, wage replacement or relief funds—may I still participate in Savings Within Reach?

As long as you are eligible to receive unemployment benefits, wage replacement or relief funds due to COVID-19, you qualify.

Do I need to provide proof that my employment has been affected by COVID-19?

Customers do not need to provide proof of COVID-19 employment impact, but customers will need to sign the Savings Within Reach application and Income Verification form to verify qualification. Customers must agree to terms and conditions and meet these qualifications:

“My household income is impacted due to Coronavirus-related employment disruptions … and is eligible to participate in Savings Within Reach through December 31, 2020.”

My job has not been impacted, but my partner’s job has been impacted by COVID-19. We file taxes separately. Can we qualify at these new income guidelines?

Yes, as long as one person in your household has had their employment affected by COVID-19.

How long will these new income guidelines related to COVID-19 be in effect?

The new guidelines are effective July 1, 2020 through December 31, 2020.

If I start a project by December 31, 2020 but it is not complete by the end of the year, can I still qualify for Savings Within Reach under these new guidelines?

For a project to qualify under these new guidelines, it must be completed by December 31, 2020.

The improvements were installed before July 1, 2020. Can I still apply under the new incentive guidelines?

Qualifying installations completed on or after July 1, 2020 will be eligible for the guidelines.

I own a multifamily property—can I qualify?

A multifamily property owner may use their own income or COVID-19 employment disruption to access Savings Within Reach incentives to complete upgrades in any unit of a multifamily property they own.

I own a multifamily property and my tenant’s employment was impacted by COVID-19—do I qualify?

A multifamily property owner may use a tenant’s income or a tenant’s COVID-19 employment disruption to access Savings Within Reach incentives to complete upgrades in the unit of the affected tenant.

Questions?

For income qualification questions or more information regarding Savings Within Reach, call 1.866.368.7878  for single-family home projects or 1.877.510.2130 for multifamily projects.