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Funding and Financing

DCSEU: Low-Income Qualified Rebates

Building Sector:

Multifamily Affordable Housing

Energy Type:

Electricity Gas

Financial Incentives:



DC Sustainable Energy Utility (DCSEU)

Program name

The Low Income Qualified Rebates (IQR)

Program summary

The IQR program offers increased rebates for the installation of energy-efficient lighting and lighting controls in buildings that serve qualified, low-income DC residents. Buildings include affordable housing, clinics, and shelters.

Applicable building size

Four or more residential units


Rebates are available for lighting controls and sensors and a range of LED bulbs and fixtures.


  • Incentive/funding details. The DCSEU sets Low-Income Prescriptive Rebates quarterly by measure type. Note: Starting on October 1, 2021 DCSEU will no longer incentivize the installation of new gas equipment but will consider efficiency improvements to existing gas equipment on a case-by-case basis.
  • Contract structure. An application is filled out by customer, which is reviewed and yields a pre-approval letter with expected rebate and different specifications for each measure that is being installed. The customer has 90 days to complete the project to receive the rebates outlined in the pre-approval letter.
  • Amount (max, min, average). Per-unit rebates are established (can be changed each quarter) and other measures are evaluated based on size and efficiency. Max: $50,000 payout for a project.
  • Simple payback. No.
  • Tax and balance sheet. Taxable; W9 is required by the DCSEU for payment.
  • Pairing with other sources. The DCSEU incentive is intended to offset the incremental cost of purchasing more-efficient equipment and does not prohibit the use of other forms of project financing (e.g. DC Green Bank, DC PACE, traditional loan, self funding).


  • When in the project process an application should be started/completed. All projects must be submitted for pre-approval prior to the purchase of equipment. Applications that are not submitted for pre-approval are not guaranteed to receive rebates from the DCSEU.
  • Level of effort required. Minimal paperwork that is very straightforward; if rebate exceeds $5,000 inspection is required by the DCSEU.
  • Length of time to receive funding. Once all documentation is submitted, inspection is completed, and the DCSEU Finance team has reviewed/approved, within four weeks.
  • Contractor requirements. No contractor requirements as customer chooses contractor

Additional information

  • Advantages. Higher-than-market rate prescriptive rebates available for qualified low-income multifamily, shelters, and clinics
  • Disadvantages. Buildings must qualify as “low income” per DCSEU requirements.
  • Ownership types or organizations are best suited for the program. Owners of qualified low-income multifamily housing, shelters, and clinics that are electric and/or natural gas utility ratepayers in the District of Columbia.
  • Program fit for the customer. Owners and managers of low-income multifamily housing, clinics, or shelters seeking known rebates for efficiency upgrades.

Take action

Contact DCSEU at or (202) 479-2222

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