City of Memphis - Energy Efficiency of Rental Properties (Tennessee)

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Last modified on February 12, 2015.

Rules Regulations Policies Program

Place Tennessee

Name City of Memphis - Energy Efficiency of Rental Properties
Incentive Type Building Energy Code
Applicable Sector Low-Income Residential, Multi-Family Residential, Residential
Eligible Technologies Building Insulation, Caulking/Weather-stripping, Comprehensive Measures/Whole Building, Custom/Others pending approval, Doors, Duct/Air sealing, Windows
Active Incentive Yes

Implementing Sector Local
Energy Category Energy Efficiency Incentive Programs

Date added to DSIRE 2009-09-23
Last DSIRE Review 2012-06-11

References DSIRE[1]


The city of Memphis adopted an ordinance in spring 2009 to improve the energy efficiency of the rental housing stock throughout the city. The ordinance establishes minimum energy efficiency standards that must be met in rental housing when the tenants pay the utility bills. Specifically, the ordinance requires that the building envelope of a residential unit have acceptable windows, sealing, weather stripping, and sufficient insulation. It requires functional heating and cooling equipment and installation as well as leak-free plumbing. The ordinance authorizes the Memphis Light, Gas and Water Division (MLGW) Utility to inspect rental units upon the request of the tenant and/or to inspect rental units with excessive utility consumption as defined in the ordinance.

MLGW works with the landlord as an advocate for the tenants, and is authorized to charge building owners an inspection fee in the event that the owner is found to be in violation of the code in any of their 60,000+ rental units. MLGW is also authorized to issue code violation citations, thereby requiring the owner of the rental unit to make required energy efficiency upgrades. Since 2009, MLGW has inspected more than 550 rental properties. All landlords have complied and brought their properties up to required standards.

Incentive Contact

Contact Name Robert Johnston
Department Memphis Light, Gas and Water Division

Address 2 220 South Main
Place Memhpis, Tennessee
Zip/Postal Code 38103
Phone (901) 322-5757
Phone 2 (901) 528-4181


Authorities (Please contact the if there are any file problems.)

Authority 1: Memphis Ordinance 5292

Date Enacted 2009

  • Incentive and policy data are reviewed and approved by the N.C. Solar Center's DSIRE project staff.[1]


  1. 1.0 1.1  "Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE)"