Habitat partner: Whirlpool Corporation

Our work

For 24 years, Whirlpool Corporation has partnered with Habitat for Humanity to help improve and broaden the ways Habitat can assist more families to achieve housing stability. Since 1999, Whirlpool Corporation has helped improve the lives of nearly 1 million people in more than 45 countries through supporting house builds, engaging in U.S. advocacy efforts and donating appliances. Now, Whirlpool Corporation’s goal is to double their impact by supporting new programs like Habitat for Humanity’s BuildBetter with Whirlpool. This three-year program will expand upon Habitat’s current efforts to help homeowners mitigate the impacts of extreme weather events by supporting the building of 250 energy-efficient and resilient homes. The aim is to produce a long-term reduction in operating costs for homeowners through an expected improvement in energy efficiency of approximately 15% compared to homes built to the current local government code. 

Whirlpool Corporation’s support of the Cost of Home advocacy campaign enables Habitat organizations, partners, volunteers and community members in the United States to help 10 million people have access to an affordable home. Through sponsorship of Habitat’s global housing forums, Whirlpool has helped to increase access to shelter for vulnerable populations around the world by joining housing organizations and nonprofit, for-profit, public sector, academia, philanthropic and global institutions to create innovative housing solutions. Whirlpool employees around the globe are engaging in the building of Habitat houses in the Asia-Pacific region, Europe, Middle East, Africa and Latin American and Caribbean countries. Whirlpool is also commissioning an energy efficiency study of the refrigerators and ranges that are donated to Habitat families in the United States.

BuildBetter with Whirlpool

LaTonya embracing family at Habitat ceremony

Habitat for Humanity’s BuildBetter with Whirlpool initiative is an expansion of Habitat’s existing BuildBetter initiative that will build climate-resilient and energy-efficient homes to help hundreds of families in need of affordable housing over three years.

BuildBetter with Whirlpool aims to help deliver an approximate 15% increase in energy efficiency compared to homes built to current government code. Ultimately, 260 resilient, energy-efficient homes will be completed, and findings from the initiative will be used to create resources that can be scaled and implemented across the U.S.

Whirlpool funds two types of grants that Habitat for Humanity affiliates use to help construct BuildBetter with Whirlpool homes:

Measuring outcomes

BuildBetter with Whirlpool homes will also measure resiliency using the Home Energy Rating System, or HERS, a nationally recognized energy use rating scale for residential construction. The lower the number, the less energy is used. A typical home in the U.S. usually rates 100 or more. The homes in BuildBetter with Whirlpool will rate 60 or below, with some going below zero due to on-site power generation and renewable energy systems.

Results from the first phase of the program have been positive. A total of 58 energy and hazard resilience projects were completed in 20 states. The average HERS rating was 54, with the lowest being 11. Twelve of these homes are in areas where Whirlpool has plants. The second phase of the program, currently in progress, will build upon the success of the first phase. Upon completion, there will be 85 energy and hazard resilience projects in 31 states, with 12 in areas where Whirlpool has plant locations.

The goals for the third phase of the program include 120 projects in 82 locations, 70 additional U.S. markets in a minimum of 30 states, and three renewable energy installations using solar panels. At the end of year three, a formal evaluation of post-occupancy energy use and performance measurement of BuildBetter with Whirlpool homes will be conducted by Habitat for Humanity’s U.S. Research and Measurement team in partnership with Auburn University Rural Studio®. The study will collect data from homeowners, including a Homeowner survey on energy use habits and utility data collection at the monthly aggregate level. Energy data collection equipment will be installed in some homes for real-time information. The results, which will be published in 2025, will be compared to non-BuildBetter with Whirlpool Habitat homes and to national Residential Energy Consumption data. The results are expected to show that Whirlpool’s investment in affordable, climate-resilient housing helps protect the planet and passes on energy reduction cost savings to homeowners who need it most.

Cost of Home advocacy

​​​​Cost of home demonstration sign in front of capitol building

Since Habitat’s Cost of Home campaign launched in 2019, Whirlpool has been a partner in the work the campaign has done to access more stable, affordable homes for people like Mattie — helping to secure more than 200 policy wins across the U.S. Through the five-year Cost of Home campaign, Habitat for Humanity is mobilizing local Habitat organizations, partners, volunteers and community members across the country to find the solutions and help create the policies that will allow 10 million individuals to meet their most basic needs.

Below is a roundup of the policy wins experienced through the Cost of Home campaign to date by Habitat for Humanity affiliates in areas where Whirlpool has a presence through manufacturing facilities or offices.

Fiscal year 2022

Fiscal Year 2021

Housing Forum: Latin America and the Caribbean

Attendees at the Latin American and Caribbean Housing Forum

Whirlpool Corporation is a strong supporter of Habitat for Humanity’s Housing Forums. In 2023, the company will participate in and sponsor the Latin American and Caribbean Housing Forum, which will be held in Bogotá, Colombia. Attendees represent private sector companies, public sector agencies, civil society organizations, academia and global institutions. The conference will focus on:

  • Increasing impact on living conditions in slums and informal settlements.
  • Addressing the quantitative and qualitative housing deficits.
  • Strengthening climate resilience for low-income communities.

Terwilliger Center for Innovation in Shelter

Whirlpool Corporation collaborates with Habitat for Humanity’s Terwilliger Center for Innovation in Shelter — or TCIS — to conduct activities aimed at delivering creative and innovative solutions to large-scale, complex societal problems.

Learn more about how Habitat and Whirlpool are working together

Whirlpool logo

Learn more about Whirlpool Corporation’s approach to social responsibility and partnership with Habitat.