Green Residential Building Program

December 05, 2013


Note: As of May 2, 2012, NYSERDA is no longer accepting Incentive Reservation Forms (IRFs). Owners that submitted an IRF prior to this date but did not receive an approval notice will be placed on a wait list, and will be notified if additional funding becomes available.

The Green Residential Building Program, administered by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), offers incentives to residential building owners for the construction or substantial renovation of buildings that are built or permanently sited in New York State and meet certain green building requirements. The program is available to owners of buildings with 1 - 11 residential dwelling units that meet the minimum green building requirements and have a Certificate of Occupancy or Certification of Completion dated between January 1, 2010 and October 30, 2013.

An eligible building owner may be the developer or builder if the developer or builder holds title to the building on the date a Certificate of Occupancy is issued. The definition of what constitutes a substantial renovation is detailed, but in basic terms requires a whole building approach that involves building envelope improvements, installation or replacement of at least two of three major building systems (electrical, plumbing, and HVAC), and equipment (e.g., lighting, appliances) that meet or exceed program efficiency requirements.

Incentives under the program are offered at up to $3.75 per qualified occupied square foot but are capped according to the number of units in the building. Maximum incentives range from $5,125 for single family dwellings, up to $13,375 for an 11-unit multi-family residential dwelling. Building owners may receive up to $120,000 through the program per calendar year.

In order to qualify for incentives, buildings must meet the following requirements:

  • Certification at the Silver level or higher, using the National Green Building Standard, or either the LEED for Homes or LEED for New Construction Rating Systems.
  • Energy-efficient lighting and appliances must achieve at least 500 kWh of annual electric saving per dwelling unit
  • Combustion appliances must have been tested for operational safety
  • For low-rise (3 or fewer stories) with 4 or fewer dwelling units (including detached single family homes and townhouses), buildings must meet additional requirements for HERS rating, ventilation, HVAC system efficiency, and water heater efficiency.

Builders or contractors of residential green homes must have prior green building experience, hold professional certification in green building, or have completed a green building professional training course approved by NYSERDA. Owners apply for incentives once the building is substantially completed, a Certificate of Occupancy or a Certificate of Completion is issued, and the building has been certified under one of the qualified rating programs.

The program is funded by money raised through the auction of carbon emission allowances under the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI). Applications will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis through October 30, 2013 or until program funding is exhausted. The most recent NYSERDA RGGI Operating Plan does not contain specific levels of future funding for the program, but does indicate an intent to provide up to $2 million annually if sufficient revenue from emission auctions is available. Please visit the program web site or contact program managers for additional information.

Program Overview

Implementing Sector: State
Category: Financial Incentive
State: New York
Incentive Type: Rebate Program
Web Site:
Administrator: New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA)
Start Date: 01/01/2010 (Certificate of Occupancy date)
Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:
  • Solar - Passive
  • Solar Water Heat
  • Solar Space Heat
  • Solar Photovoltaics
  • Wind (All)
  • Biomass
  • Geothermal Heat Pumps
  • Daylighting
  • Comprehensive Measures/Whole Building
  • Wind (Small)
  • Hydroelectric (Small)
Incentive Amount: Up to $3.75 per occupied square foot
Maximum Incentive: Per Building: $5,125 for single-family dwellings, up to $13,375 for an 11-unit residential building
Per Owner: $120,000 per calendar year
Eligible System Size: Buildings must have less than 12 dwelling units
Equipment Requirements: Buildings must be certified at the Silver level or higher, using the National Green Building Standard, or either the LEED for Homes or LEED for New Construction Rating Systems; energy-efficient lighting and appliances must achieve at least 500 kWh of annual electric saving per dwelling unit; combustion appliances must be tested for operational safety; additional requirements for some building types and individual pieces of equipment
Installation Requirements: Builders must meet minimum green building qualification requirements; verification technicians must be program-approved


Name: 21 NYCRR Part 508
Date Enacted: 09/03/2010
Effective Date: 09/22/2010
Name: NYCL Pub A § 1872
Date Enacted: 09/25/2008
Effective Date: 09/25/2008


Name: Program Information - Green Residential Building Program
Organization: New York State Energy Research and Developmen
Address: 17 Columbia Circle
Albany NY 12203-6399
Phone: (518) 862-1090

This information is sourced from DSIRE; the most comprehensive source of information on incentives and policies that support renewables and energy efficiency in the United States. Established in 1995, DSIRE is operated by the N.C. Clean Energy Technology Center at N.C. State University.