Spend Less Money to Make Your Home Energy Efficient

The Home Upgrade Program will be closing at the end of 2020. As of December 15th, the program is no longer enrolling new customers.

Did you know that most houses lose up to half of their cooled or heated air? In fact, all of the small cracks and leaks in your house could add up to a gap the size of a hula hoop!

Making improvements to your home’s energy efficiency through the Advanced Home Upgrade Program helps you save energy and money and enhances indoor air quality―making your home more livable and more comfortable. Even simple improvements like sealing leaky ducts, or installing an efficient heating and cooling system can make a big difference in your home’s comfort and air quality.

By participating in the Advanced Home Upgrade Program, you can:

  • Make your home more comfortable in all seasons.

  • Improve the air quality inside your home for a healthier and safer indoor environment.

  • Save energy and lower your bills.

  • Conserve resources and reduce greenhouse gases.

You may be eligible for incentives up to $5,500.

For further details about the Advanced Home Upgrade Program,  contact one of our participating contractors.

To be eligible for incentives, you must:

  • Be an SDG&E customer with an account in good standing.
  • Own a single-family detached home or attached home with two to four units. Some restrictions may apply; talk to a Home Performance Contractor about your specific home.
  • Have the upgrades installed by a Home Performance Contractor.

Did you know that financing options are available for residential electric customers who seek to make energy improvements to their homes through the Home Upgrade Program? Single-family homeowners may qualify for the Residential Energy Efficiency Loan (REEL) Assistance program. The REEL program provides attractive financing options to help residential customers complete energy efficiency projects. The program is administered by the California Hub for Energy Efficiency Financing (CHEEF) in partnership with California’s Investor-Owned Utilities. Participating REEL lenders offer energy efficiency loans with favorable rates and terms.

To learn more about these financing options, visit https://gogreenfinancing.com/residential

We work with a network of specially trained home performance contractors who can provide Advanced Home Upgrade Program services. Home performance Contractors:

  • Use advanced diagnostic tools to assess your home’s energy

  • Recommend improvements throughout your home

  • Explain all the benefits of specific upgrades

  • Ensure the upgrade work done in your home will help you maximize energy savings, indoor air quality and comfort.

  • Submit the incentive applications on your behalf

Find a Home Performance Contractor today.

After choosing your Home Performance Contractor, getting started with Home Upgrade requires just a few simple steps as outlined below. 

  1. Whole-Home Energy Assessment: Your participating Home Performance Contractor will perform a whole-home energy assessment, and will explain how your home works as system, including what aspects could be improved to enhance comfort and energy performance. The whole-home energy assessment will help you and your participating Home Performance Contractor decide what improvements would be most beneficial, and will also help determine the amount of cash-back incentives you can receive from SDG&E.
  2. Perform Home Improvements: After completing the whole-home energy assessment, your participating Home Performance Contractor will perform the upgrades that are right for your home. Upgrades eligible for incentives from SDG&E include:
    • Air sealing
    • Duct sealing
    • Attic insulation
    • High-efficiency furnaces and cooling systems
    • Wall insulation
    • Floor insulation
    • Windows
    • Pool pumps
    • Water Heater
    • And more!

    After your upgrades are complete, SDG&E may send an independent third-party contractor to perform a quality assurance inspection on the work completed at your home. If this additional inspection occurs, it will be at no additional cost to you or your home performance contractor.

  3. Enjoy a More Comfortable Home and Cash-Back Incentives from SDG&E: With incentives starting from $1,000, now is the time to make the types of improvements to your home that can make it more comfortable and energy-efficient.
    SDG&E is here to help you every step of the way – if you have any questions throughout your Home Upgrade process call us at 877-357-8241.

Frequently Asked Questions

A certified Building Performance Institute building analyst will perform a combustion appliance safety test before the work is completed, during the work whenever changes are made to the pressure relationships in the home, and after the work is completed. This test includes checking for carbon monoxide and natural gas leaks from appliances such as stoves, furnaces and water heaters. If a carbon monoxide, natural gas or ventilation issue is detected, the contractor or rater will notify you and either correct the issue or contact an SDG&E representative to address the matter immediately. A carbon monoxide monitor will be installed for continuous safety monitoring after the work is completed.

A study released in July 2012 found that California homes labeled by ENERGY STAR®, LEED for Homes or GreenPoint Rated sell for 9 percent more (+/-4 percent) than comparable, non-labeled homes and are on the market for a shorter time. There is no doubt that energy upgrades consistently make significant, noticeable improvements to the comfort and efficiency of homes while potentially making them healthier and more durable. However, these upgrades are typically not as visible as aesthetic features such as granite countertops, so the key lies in communicating the benefits to parties like appraisers, buyers and lenders. Energy performance is becoming increasingly integrated into the real estate community, and efforts like the Green MLS are helping to ensure that energy performance is reflected in home values.

A Home Energy Rating System Rater (known as a HERS Rater) is an independent party that conducts an assessment of your home and provides an official energy rating certificate, or score, of your home’s energy performance. A rating could be used before an upgrade to compare against contractor proposals and help evaluate them. A rating could also be used after an upgrade to communicate your home’s improved performance to other parties such as buyers or lenders. It can also help you qualify for an energy efficiency mortgage. Raters do not, however, do combustion safety testing, which is an important requirement for participating in the Home Upgrade Program. Getting a rating is an optional addition to the energy assessment “test-in” and “test-out” required when you do a comprehensive whole-house upgrade.

Remodeling is a great time to consider an energy upgrade because it can help you ensure the remodeling is following the best practices to minimize energy consumption in your home. If an addition is part of the remodel, it is possible to participate in the Advanced Home Upgrade program and receive a rebate. However, the modeled energy savings for the entire project need to compensate for the extra energy use that will come from the added space.

You definitely can. Each home, condominium or other unit you own may be eligible for incentives. The incentive is administered per dwelling and SDG&E account, not per person.

Do-it-yourself projects are not eligible for incentives. Furthermore, unless you have completed building science and combustion safety training and own the appropriate tools (such as blower door, duct leakage tester, manometer, infrared camera), you are less likely to achieve the maximum energy savings identified by a participating Home Performance Contractor. And, you could potentially create a health and safety issue in your home.

You must be an SDG&E customer in good standing to qualify for incentives from SDG&E.

The time from assessment to rebate received can vary significantly, based mostly on the size of the project and your involvement throughout the process. Assuming a homeowner is ready to sign the contract and move forward with the project relatively quickly, a rough average is around 6‒8 weeks from assessment to incentive check in hand.

Most Home Performance Contractors will want to do their own assessment of your home before creating a proposal for you. Therefore, it is best to feel comfortable with your contractor selection BEFORE you get your assessment, to avoid having to pay for multiple assessments. Find a Home Performance Contractor that serves your area. You can look at contractor locations, specialties and websites. Make a list of contractors that look like a good potential fit. Then, call or email them to explain your particular concerns about your house. Ask questions about their qualifications, work practices, availability and pricing. Through this process, you should gain a sense of who you would feel comfortable working with for both your assessment AND your upgrade project.

Many different financing options are available to help you cover the cost of an energy upgrade. Your Home Performance Contractor can discuss financing options that can help you meet your goals.

Single-family homeowners wanting to increase their home’s efficiency while reducing costs may qualify for the Residential Energy Efficiency Loan (REEL) Assistance program. The REEL program provides attractive financing options to help residential customers complete energy efficiency projects. The program is administered by the California Hub for Energy Efficiency Financing (CHEEF) in partnership with California’s Investor-Owned Utilities. Participating REEL lenders offer energy efficiency loans with favorable rates and terms.

To learn more about these financing options, visit https://gogreenfinancing.com/residential .

The cost of an upgrade can vary significantly, depending on the size of your house, your particular scope of work and many other factors. On average, the cost of a comprehensive whole-house upgrade is around $12,000, with an average rebate of around $3,000. But this could vary widely. You can work with your Home Performance Contractor to craft an upgrade that works with your budget and your priorities. When the assessment is complete, your Home Performance Contractor will provide you with a proposal containing their recommendations. You can work with them to add or remove items as you see fit. 

It depends on the upgrades you want to install and the level of energy savings your home qualifies for based on those upgrades. Your Home Performance Contractor can help your upgrade options and help you determine which best suit your home’s needs.

Yes. You must work with an Advanced Home Upgrade Home Performance Contractor in order to receive incentives. These professionals have completed extensive training in building science, combustion safety and energy modeling, and  are licensed, bonded, insured and subject to quality assurance reviews.