The costs of installing or replacing HVAC systems in residential and non-residential buildings can be expensive. However, several federal agencies sponsor government grants to cover the costs of purchasing HVACs as well as labor and other equipment costs to install these systems. Some federal programs do not award grants covering the total project costs and require applicants to pay some of the expenses with outside funding.
The Very Low-Income Housing Repair Program
Seniors who need to replace their HVAC systems but cannot afford the costs are eligible to apply for grant assistance from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, or USDA. The Very Low-Income Housing Repair Program awards grants for the removal of health and safety hazards from homes owned by senior citizens 62 years of age and older. The maximum award amount from the program is $7,500. Recipients cannot sell their homes for three years or they may have to pay back their grants.
Installing HVAC systems into homes occupied by low-income individuals and families is one of several projects funded by the Department of Energy under the Weatherization assistance program. Grants pay for weatherization services to make homes energy efficient. Other eligible projects include adding weatherstripping to doors and replacing windows. The average amount to weatherize a home is $6,500. Weatherization services are provided free of charge to homeowners.
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Public Housing Capital Fund
Housing authorities can apply for grants to upgrade HVAC systems in public housing units from the Department of Housing and Urban Development, or HUD. The Public Housing Capital Fund provides grants for developing and modernizing public housing units. Grants also fund management improvements. The grant program doesn't allow recipients to make luxury improvements to housing units with grant funds.
Community Facilities Grant Program
Community buildings used for public, health care and public safety purposes that need a replacement HVAC system can apply for financial assistance through the Community Facilities Grant program. Funded by the USDA, grants cover building construction, expansion and improvement project costs. The grant program also covers equipment purchases needed for facility operations. Grants are awarded for projects in communities with 20,000 residents and less, with higher considerations given to areas with the lowest population and income levels. The grants cover up to 75 percent of the project costs.