By Christopher Morales
Lack of familiarity. Contractors and service providers are not familiar with the program requirements. As a consequence, either through specifying disqualified equipment or being unable to provide sufficient documentation, the implemented measure no longer qualifies for an incentive or rebate.
Falling short. The final incentive or rebate amount is less than the anticipated or estimated amount. Managers can become frustrated because they perceive the incentive or rebate program process as being slow and cumbersome. As a consequence, they might try to apply pressure to their installing contractors to get their work done faster.
This push can create a breeding ground for mistakes, either through failing to install equipment correctly or losing the required documentation in the shuffle. As a result, several things can happen. The installing contractor might have to correct these errors in the warranty period. The organization fails to realize energy savings. The measure might no longer qualify for an incentive or rebate. Or the incentive or rebate amount is less than anticipated.
By understanding the way utility incentive and rebate programs work, and armed with the right strategies, managers can successfully implement qualifying measures for rebates and incentives to achieve savings. Key strategies include:
Finding the right one. Engage the appropriate utility incentive or rebate program before the project begins. Managers should contact their local utility service provider account representative before the project begins and contractors and service providers have been selected. In fact, managers should take this step before issuing any requests for proposals for consulting services and installing contractors.
Account representatives can guide managers to the appropriate incentive or rebate programs and help initiate any pre-approval application process the program might be require. The account representative also should be able to connect the manager with the program manager for the appropriate incentive or rebate program.