Upper Explorerland Regional Planning Commission
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Energy Burden

Energy Burden

Are energy costs a burden for you and your household?
Curious to learn more about energy burden?
Here is some information for you to know!

Household Energy Burden Based on Area Median Income (AMI):

The Area Median Income (AMI) is the midpoint of a region’s income distribution – half of families in a region earn more than the median and half earn less. Based on AMI, households pay an average of 4% of income on energy (accounting for all fuel types).  This is a 33% increase above the state average of 3% of income. 

Households at 0 – 30% of AMI pay a much higher amount of their income on energy (accounting for all fuel types), up to 20%.  This is also a 33% increase above the state average for that income group.

Household Average Energy Burden Based on AMI

Type of Fuel Used Also Impacts Energy Burden

The percentage of income going towards energy costs increases based on fuel used.  The following tables compare percentage of income spent on energy for AMI vs. 0 – 30% AMI households, based on four common heating fuel types.  Amounts spent for all fuel types are higher in the region than in that state.

Percentage of Income Spent on Energy

What can you do? What are tools to help? Here’s what we know about programs today.

IRA-Funded Rebate Programs

  • The Department of Energy will send funds to state energy offices to implement a HOMES rebate program to provide rebates to homeowners and aggregators for whole-house energy saving retrofits.

  • The Department of Energy will provide grants to states and tribes to implement a high-efficiency electric home rebate (HEEHR) program. Eligible recipients must fall below 150% of the area median income, providing up to $14,000 in point-of-sale rebates per household.

Home Appliance and Electrification Rebate

  • Iowa’s share is $60.5 million, program will be done when funds are expended.
  • Program to start sometime mid 2024?
  • 80% AMI about $55,000/household of two, 150% AMI about $91,000/household of two.
  • Applies to multifamily buildings whose residents are income eligible.

Home Energy Rebate Program

  • Program is geared toward building envelope and efficiency upgrades that improve overall building efficiency by at least 20% and 35%.
  • Iowa’s share is $60.5 million, program will be done when funds are expended.
  • Program to start sometime mid 2024?
  • Applies to multifamily buildings whose residents are income-eligible.
  • Qualifying low- and moderate-income households can receive up 80% of project costs up to $8,000.
  • Non-income qualifying households can receive up to 50% of project costs up to $4,000.

25C Residential Energy Efficiency Tax Credit

  • Available now!
  • 30 percent capped tax credit for residential efficiency and electrification upgrades, up to $3,200 per year.
  • Annual credit for heat pumps capped at $2,000 annually.
  • Covers purchase and installation costs for heat pumps, HPWH, panel upgrades; covers just purchase costs for other listed upgrades.
  • $600 for electrical panel upgrades if they are installed in conjunction with and enable heat pump or HPWH.
  • Credit limit is annual, can be taken annually with no lifetime limit, household must have adequate tax liability for the year improvement was made and credit cannot carry forward.
  • 30% / $600 credit for energy star central air conditioners, 30% / $600 credit for oil, natural gas and propane boilers and furnaces at least 97 AFUE.

Direct / Elective Pay Guidance for Non-Taxable Entities

  • Step 1: Identify the project and the tax credit you want to pursue.
  • Step 2. Complete your project, place it into service.
  • Step 3: Determine when your tax return will be due.
  • Step 4: Complete pre-filing registration with the IRS before your tax return is due.
  • Step 5: Once you receive a valid registration number, file your tax return by the due date.
  • Step 6: Receive your direct payment.

Business Energy Investment Tax Credit, ITC (§48/48E)

  • Eligible Technologies Include: Solar Water Heat, Solar Space Heat, Solar Photovoltaics, Wind (All), Geothermal Heat Pumps, Combined Heat & Power, Lithium-Ion Battery Storage.
  • 30% tax credit if all laborers and mechanics involved in the construction of the project or the maintenance of the project for 5 years after project completion are paid wages at rates not less than prevailing wages.
  • 10% additional Domestic Content tax credit if 100% of any steel or iron that is a component of the facility and 40% of the manufactured products that are components of the facility was produced in the United States.

If you have questions or want to learn more about these programs and others, please reach out to your energy district officials for more information:

Clayton County:          Joleen Jansen – Joleen.jansen@cleanenergydistricts.org


Allamakee County:     Jim Martin-Schramm – marschja@luther.edu

                                         Lori Egan – mail@allamakee.energydistrict.org


Howard County:          Paul Lovell – paullovell4216@gmail.com


Winneshiek County:    Paul Cutting – paul@energydistrict.org

                                        Jim Martin-Schramm – marschja@luther.edu