In our recent post “8 handy tips for renters who want to electrify“, we suggested that, as a renter, you may benefit from introducing your landlord to their electrification options. Your landlord might not know about heat pumps for heating/cooling, heat pump water heaters, induction ranges—or that new incentives can cover much of the costs to electrify these systems—or the importance of planning ahead to do these replacements before the existing ones die. They also might not know how much you’d appreciate the upgrade!
To help you approach your landlord or property management company, we have created a letter template you can modify and send. Try it out—and we’d be curious to learn what response you get.
Dear [Landlord’s Name],
I hope this letter finds you well. I’m writing to you to start a conversation about the possibility of updating my <apartment/house> so it’s powered entirely by clean electricity.
Going all-electric has many benefits, and it will improve the value of your property moving forward. With the rising concern over safety and indoor air quality from gas combustion, the rising cost of gas (which increased by 42% since late 2021), and the availability of new financial incentives to upgrade to electric systems, electrification is a new trend quickly gaining momentum. In addition to better indoor air quality and lower utility bills, it would be great to have cooling as an option in the summer, which comes automatically with heat pump units.
For my part, I’m ensuring that all the electricity I use comes from renewable sources by signing up for <community solar OR My utility’s green power program>. That way, if/when my rental goes all electric, its carbon footprint will drop to zero.
As you may know, through the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act, the federal government now offers tax credits for heat pumps, heat pump water heaters, electric panels, weatherization upgrades and EV chargers. These can be bundled with local incentives through the Energy Trust of Oregon to make it less expensive to convert a property to electric than it is to replace existing gas equipment with new gas equipment. You could access these incentives to cover a significant portion of the cost of upgrading our unit, making it a more affordable option for us both. See below for links to more details about incentives, and a list of local contractors.
I hope you’ll consider making plans for—and taking initial steps towards— electrifying this rental property. By planning ahead before the current systems stop working, you can get the electrical work and system change-over done at a scheduled time rather than as an emergency, thereby minimizing the inevitable transition time to a new air and/or water heating system.
I understand that although this conversion may require some initial investment, new financial incentives make it possible to get started on upgrades that will yield long-term benefit to both of us—and for the environment. If you’d like to discuss this further or have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to me.
Thank you for your time and consideration.
Visit electrifypdx.org to learn why and how to power homes with clean energy, including local contractors to help do the work
ElectrifyPDX Facebook group: To post questions – and get answers – about your electrification projects.
Federal tax credits and rebates: Rewiring America’s IRA Savings Calculator
Energy Trust of Oregon
- How to combine federal tax credits with ETO incentives https://blog.energytrust.org/how-to-combine-new-home-energy-tax-credits-with-energy-trust-incentives/
- Incentives for landlords of single family properties https://www.energytrust.org/incentives/landlords-property-managers-single-family-homes/
- Incentives for landlords of multifamily properties https://www.energytrust.org/commercial/multifamily-cash-incentives/