Freedom and Unity

Prepare Your Home for Winter

Winter is a great time of year in Vermont, but it’s important to be prepared to keep your home safe and warm. The State of Vermont and community partners offer a number of resources to help Vermonters prepare their homes to maximize energy efficiency and navigate winter heating needs, including financial assistance for low- and moderate-income households. Throughout this page, you will find links to these resources, from energy efficiency audits to fuel assistance programs, listed under the following categories:


For additional resources, tips and ideas to prepare your home for winter, visit Button Up Vermont is a preparedness campaign, providing information from tips on air sealing and insulation, to weighing the benefits of upgrades like energy efficient heat pumps.  

Conserving Energy

Improving the efficiency of your home and home heating equipment can help reduce your heating costs and benefits the environment. There are still steps Vermonters can take to make their homes more efficient to conserve energy this winter, and more opportunities to get ahead for next year. Below you will find information, guides, and financial assistance available to improve the efficiency of your home and conserve energy.

Financial Assistance, Purchasing Incentives and Discounts

A variety of financial supports, incentives, discounts and no-cost offers are available, depending on income level, utility and region. Click the links below to access more information and to apply.

  • Home Weatherization Assistance Program: Free weatherization for income-eligible households via the State of Vermont. **When considering the other options listed below, Vermonters below 80% Area Median Income (AMI) should be applying to this program first for no cost weatherization.
  • Enhanced Income-Qualified Weatherization Rebate: Incentives to cover 75% of weatherization up to $5000 via Vermont Gas Systems.**
  • 3E Thermal Services: Cash incentives and technical support for installing energy efficiency upgrades in qualified Vermont apartment buildings via 3E Thermal and State of Vermont.
  • Saving Energy in Your Kitchen: Rebates for energy efficient kitchen appliances via Burlington Electric Department.
  • Energy Savings Kit: Free LED lightbulbs, water saving devices, etc. via Efficiency Vermont.
  • Residential Appliance, Home Heating/Cooling and Home Improvement Rebates: Rebates for a variety of efficiency products and projects, including heat pumps, wood pellet stoves, furnaces and boilers, clothes dryers, insulation and sealing, and more via Efficiency Vermont and network partners.
  • Federal Tax Credit for Biomass Stoves: Federal tax credit on the purchase of a wood or pellet stove or larger residential biomass heating system with a Thermal Efficiency Rating of at least 75%.
  • Woodstove Change out and Repair Incentive: Incentives are available to help cover the costs of replacing old inefficient wood stoves with advanced EPA certified wood and pellet stoves via the Vermont Clean Energy Development Fund (CEDF) at the Vermont Department of Public Service.
  • Advanced Wood Heating System Incentive: Incentive to install efficient central wood pellet heating systems via the Vermont Department of Public Service.
  • Coal Change Out Incentive: Discount to replace coal stove, furnace, or boiler with a pellet stove, furnace, or boiler via the Vermont Department of Public Service.
  • Stowe Electric Department Energy Transformation Incentives: Range of rebates and discounts towards the purchase and installation of technologies to help reduce fossil fuel consumption, like heat pumps and wood/pellet stoves, which can be used on top of Efficiency Vermont incentives.
  • Vermont Electric Co-Op Energy Transformation Incentives: Range of bill credits and incentives for members to transition to cleaner technologies, like heat pumps, heat pump water heaters, pellet stoves and induction cooktops, some of which can be used on top of Efficiency Vermont incentives.
  • Vermont Gas Systems Residential Equipment Rebates & Financing: Rebates for installing high efficiency home heating and water equipment, and low-rate financing through VGS partner Green Mountain Credit Union.
  • Button Up Washington Electric Co-op (WEC): Incentives that supplement Efficiency Vermont incentives for eligible equipment when installed by approved certified contractors, including for weatherization projects**, heat pumps, heat pump water heaters, wood/pellet stoves, and more.
  • Pellet Storage Voucher: Provides a voucher to cover a portion (up to 85%) of the costs of installing pellet storage systems for existing heating systems or additional bin installation with a new system via the Vermont Public Service Department.
  • Wood Pellet or Chip Fired Evaporator Incentive: Incentives for existing sugaring operations to cover a portion of the cost of a new evaporator that completely replaces oil, propane or cord wood fired units with wood pellet or wood chip fired units (cord/chunk wood fired systems are ineligible for this incentive) via the Vermont Public Service Department.
  • Heat Pump Water Heater Giveaway: Vermont Gas Systems is offering three free electric heat pump water heaters to be given out via a time-limited lottery.
  • Home Performance with ENERGY STAR Incentive: Work with an Efficiency Excellence Network contractor to improve your home's insulation and air sealing and get 75% off project costs via Efficiency Vermont.

Financing for Projects and Purchases

State and private entities offer financing tools, special rates and no and low interest loans to support projects that increase energy efficiency. Click the links below to access more information and to apply.

Home Energy Assessments and Audits

Professional assessment of household improvement needs to help conserve more energy, keep homes more comfortable, and help save on energy costs for the long-term.

Guides and Tips

Learn more about improving the efficiency of your home and reducing your energy consumption through guides, tips, FAQs, events and more.

Return to top of page

Managing Costs & Financial Support

The State of Vermont, non-profits and private partners across the state offer multiple programs to help Vermonters managing home heating costs. Below you will find a range of resources to help you manage your costs, including income-dependent financial assistance and subsidies, group-negotiated rates for lower pricing, bill payment support, financing and more. Importantly, improvements to make your home more energy efficient and use more energy efficient home heating devices is a critical way to lower your heating costs, so be sure to look at the above “Conserving Energy” listings to help.

Financial Assistance

A variety of financial supports, subsidies and discounts are available, depending on income level. Click the links below to access more information and to apply.

Pricing Stability and Bill Payment Resources

Access to negotiated reduced pricing and bill-pay tools, loans and resources through private partners. Click the links below to access more information and to apply.

  • VSECU Fuel Buying Program: VSECU members can benefit from negotiated reduced pricing from participating fuel dealers. Includes bill payment and planning tools via VHeat Clearing Accounts.
  • VSECU VHeat Credit Line: Provides with a safety net for fuel payments for VSECU members using its VHeat Clearing Account by activating a line of credit if there are insufficient funds or for heating-related services such as cleaning, repairs or upgrades.
  • VSECU Home Fuel Loan: Low, fixed-rate loans specifically designed to help cover unexpected heating costs.
  • Financial and Energy Coaching: Through one-on-one coaching and community workshops, a team of qualified Financial and Energy Coaches provides tools to help low- and moderate-income residents manage money, cut costs, and connect with programs and resources to save energy via community action agencies.

Return to top of page

Emergency Aid

The State of Vermont and partners offer resources and services to help address emergency and crisis home heating needs for eligible Vermonters. Below you will find links to those programs and details on how to access these supports by clicking on the links.

Emergency Aid

  • Crisis Fuel Assistance: Helps prevent a heating crisis in the winter months by providing emergency financial assistance to income-eligible households to prevent disconnection of utilities that help heat your home via Vermont Department for Children and Families.
  • Emergency Heating System Program: Makes emergency repairs to heating system in a no heat situation via Vermont Department for Children and Families.
  • Emergency Repair Loans (Burlington): Low-interest loans for emergency repairs to correct life-threatening safety code violations via the City of Burlington/Community & Economic Development Office.

Return to top of page

Safety Tips & Resources

Home heating is critical to keeping Vermonters safe, healthy and warm during the cold winter months, but it’s important for Vermonters to use equipment properly and take steps to prevent accidents, like fires and carbon monoxide poisoning, and to avoid winter-related accidents and risks outside the home. Below you will find links to safety tips and guides as well as resources to stay safe this winter and beyond.


Plan ahead and get prepared for potential emergencies, power outages or other disruptions with the below resources.


Tips and resources to prevent accidents due to home heating.

  • Safe Heating: Tips and guidance to safely heat your home via Vermont Emergency Management.
  • Burn Wise: Videos on safely building the perfect fire, using wood stoves, stove installation, and more.
  • Chimney Safety Homeowner Resources: Tips and resources to keep your chimney clean and safe via Chimney Safety Institute of America.
  • Wood Heat and Indoor Air Quality: Tips on how to heat with wood in a way that maximizes air quality via the Vermont Department of Health.

Stay Informed

Communications channels to stay up to date on winter storms, outages, available supports and more.

  • VT-Alert: VT-ALERT is used by the state and local responders to notify the public of emergency situations.  Those include, but are not limited to, evacuation information; chemical spills; shelter-in-place alerts; severe weather advisories; boil water advisories, and roadway interruptions.  Residents can tailor the alerts to specific locations, types of alerts and on which devices they will be notified.
  • Vermont 2-1-1: Provides all people in Vermont with free access to community resources information and referral, including personal assistance by telephone by dialing 211, by text, and through an online, searchable database of services.
  • Vermont Outages: Provides information and mapping on utility outages by county and utility.
  • #WinterReadyVT: Social media campaign to share timely winter safety information, tips, resources and real time information with Vermonters.

Consumer Protection

The State of Vermont offers consumer protections services for all types of consumer issues, including those that impact winter needs like heating fuel, home repairs, scam alerts and more.

  • Consumer Assistance Program: Partnership of the Vermont Attorney General’s Office and University of Vermont to help Vermonters with consumer problems, including surrounding heating fuel and home repairs.
  • Public Service Department Consumer Affairs: Consumer information and support from the Vermont Public Service Department, including for utility issues.

Return to top of page