How Commercial Property Owners Benefit from Rebate Programs and Program Contractors

It’s Good For Your Business And The Bottom Line

Commercial property investors spend a lot of time thinking about ways to increase NOI. Taking advantage of incentives offered by utility companies is one way to improve your bottom line. And, leveraging program contractor services can be a great way to achieve this so you can move on to other things.

Facility managers and property owners may not realize that many of these benefits are available to them through NorthWestern Energy.

NorthWestern Energy offers rebates for commercial electric customers on retrofit and new construction projects.  Lighting upgrades are the most common, while improvements to motors, fans, and pumps have great potential for energy savings as well. Rebate money is available to offset installation/upgrade costs for these projects. Consulting with a program contractor can be greatly beneficial. Program contractors can assist property owners and management companies through the sometimes difficult process of specifying light fixtures that meet your needs, reviewing and processing your application for rebates, pre-qualifying a project to ensure it qualifies, and much more.

Check out a recent success story: Sterling Commercial Management Group (CMG)  partnered with CTA Architects Engineers on a variable frequency drive (VFD) project for one of their Missoula client’s properties. When CTA was contacted about the potential rebate, they sent an energy engineering specialist to Missoula to secure the necessary application paperwork. The team reviewed the project and determined the 2 – 50HP VFDs would qualify. With receipt of the final invoices, the application can be submitted for processing, and a rebate check will be mailed within 4-6 weeks! The program contractor, in this case CTA, handles any follow-up questions from the utility company to ensure projects receive the maximum available incentive.

What was the value to Sterling CMG’s client? To put it in monetary terms, the cost to supply and install both VFDs was just over $12,000. The project qualified for a $5,000 rebate so net cost to the client was $7,000. Furthermore, the reduction in energy consumption from installation of the VFDs will be realized in lower monthly energy bills and will ultimately pay for itself in approximately 3 years.

While no one project can be considered typical, lighting rebates are the most robust with a $3 rebate per LED tube and rebates up to $200 per LED fixture. Upgrades to motors, fans, and pumps where a VFD is applicable offer a rebate of $50 per horse power.

If you are unsure if a rebate is available for a current or future project, reach out to a program contractor for more information. Any project completed after July 1, 2018, is eligible for review. (The current rebate program year ends June 30, 2019).

There are many options for retrofit and new construction projects, but bringing on a program contractor can be hugely beneficial to your bottom line. Have questions or ready to talk specifics? Contact us today!

In 2018, CTA program contractor services provided NorthWestern Energy’s commercial electric customers with over $2 Million Dollars in commercial rebates and saved over 15 million kWh (Kilowatt Hours) resulting in a reduction of $1.5 Million dollars on their power bills.


Ryan Schwochert
Energy Engineering Specialist
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