Cash for Refrigerators and Appliances
On the heels of Cash for Clunkers, a $300 million federal program offering rebates of $50 to $200 for high efficiency household appliances is slated to begin this fall, in hopes of boosting a worsening home appliance industry slump that began in 2006 as the housing market cooled. The money is part of the economic stimulus bill passed earlier this year.
According to U.S. Department of Energy Secretary Steven Chu, the goal is to “help families make the transition to more efficient appliances, making purchases that will directly stimulate the economy and create jobs.”
It is doubtful a “cash for refrigerators and appliances” program will have an impact, as rebate programs have existed in more than 25 states for years, with little effect on demand.
“The cash-for-clunkers [program] had a discernible value proposition for the consumer, because he knows how much his [clunker] is worth,” says Raymond James analyst Sam Darkatsh. “With appliances, there is no trade-in. You can walk into Home Depot and get a great deal on a home appliance any time you want one. Why would it drum up sales now?”