Financing need not be a barrier to improving energy efficiency in your commercial building. There are federal, state, and local and tax incentives for energy efficiency upgrades, and other financial opportunities to help you meet your energy goals. The U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, for example, offers financial assistance opportunities to business, industry, universities, and others for the development and demonstration of energy-efficiency strategies and technologies. Other methods of financing energy-efficiency improvements include debt, utility on-bill financing, performance contracting, and other existing and emerging mechanisms.

Photo of a block in lower downtown Denver that is part of Living City Block, a DOE Commercial Building Partnerships participant.

Living City Block is using a variety of financing methods to upgrade the energy efficiency of buildings in this lower downtown Denver neighborhood.

In addition to these opportunities, commercial building owners and managers can take advantage of other tools available through the DOE's Building Technologies Office, to help them through the financing process for energy-efficiency improvements to their buildings, including tax incentivesqualified software for calculating tax deductions, and a tax calculator for determining available tax credits specific to commercial buildings. Further resources are provided regarding green leases.

Key Resources

Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE)
Use this comprehensive database to find city, state, federal, and utility incentives and policies related to energy efficiency and renewables. The database includes financial incentives such as tax incentives, rebates, grants, loans, etc., in addition to policies such as efficiency, construction, and design standards and building energy codes.

Clean Energy Finance Guide for Commercial Buildings
Learn about how your state, local, and tribal government can create commercial financing programs for energy-efficiency improvements.

Use this guide to determine the financial feasibility of energy-efficiency projects.

For additional financing resources, see the Commercial Buildings Resource Database