Funds for Illinois Appliance Rebate Program Run Out Quickly

April 18, 2010

If you regularly read Chicagoland Real Estate Forum, then chances are you caught our recent article about the energy appliance rebate program taking place from April 16 to 25 or until funds ran out.

That program barely lasted one day.

Customers lined up at the door of many appliance stores hours before opening to take advantage of the Illinois Energy Star Appliance Rebate Program, which offers rebates to Illinois consumers who replace older appliances with more energy-efficient products.

The first-come, first-serve program started at 8 a.m. Friday, and many stores opened early to accommodate buyers. By 7 p.m. the same day, state officials said the more than $6.2 million in federal funds allotted to Illinois were gone.

“This program was an overwhelming success,” said Illinois Governor Pat Quinn. “Tens of thousands of consumers have new, energy-efficient appliances at a savings. In the months to come, their energy consumption will be reduced and so will their energy bills.

At least $20 million in appliances were sold in the first four hours alone and more than $31 million was spent on over 50,000 qualified products by 5 p.m., the time state officials announced that the money was running out.

According to the Governor’s office, additional funds for the final hour came from the state’s Energy Efficiency Trust Fund, a source operated by the State Energy Office that gets its backing from all electric providers.

The 15-percent rebate was on Energy Star qualified washing machines, dishwashers, air conditioners, refrigerators and freezers, with 60 percent of the purchases on Friday going for the latter two. Those who bought a fridge or freezer can also get a $75 mail-in rebate with proof that they properly recycled their old ones.

“Our hats are off to the retailers who participated in this program,” said Governor Quinn, “some of whom are continuing their own sales even after the rebate program closes.”

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I think it’s great that working people would not have had a chance to participate in this. Way to go, Illinois.

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