Sign and hard hat on build site

Whirlpool Corporation’s donated appliances help build affordable homes

For Habitat for Humanity Pinellas and West Pasco Counties, ordering major home appliances from Whirlpool Corporation through Habitat’s donated product program has had a big impact on building affordable homes. The Florida-based affiliate built 80 Habitat homes last year in partnership with local families.

“One of our future homeowners that we’re partnering with right now, she’s currently paying 60% of her monthly income toward rent,” says Jack Shanks, Habitat Pinellas and West Pasco Counties’ chief program officer. “The monthly mortgage payment on her Habitat home is going to be half of what she’s currently paying. Because of partnerships, especially with Whirlpool, we’re able to make a difference in this.” 

Increasing capacity to serve more families

Jack explains that many renters have inadequate kitchen appliances, forcing them to spend money eating out. “It creates an added cost burden to those renting if they can’t use the stove, microwave or refrigerator.”

Not only do donated Whirlpool appliances help families save money on food expenses, they also help them save on major home appliance purchases. “Normally when you buy a house, items like a refrigerator aren’t included. And so that would be a major expense for the new homeowner to make their house move-in ready,” says Elaine Mathews, executive director of Greene County Habitat in Georgia. “The fact that we can build a move-in ready house alongside our families is really helpful for them.” 

Throughout 25 years of working together, Whirlpool has surpassed more than US$125 million in donated product to Habitat through more than 241,000 major home appliances to over 198,000 families around the world. The donated appliances help affiliates build more Habitat homes. 

“Any construction budget line item that can be covered for an affiliate through the donated product and discount programs allows that affiliate to stretch their dollars further,” says Kimberly Merritt, Habitat for Humanity International’s director of donated product. “That means those savings can help to build more homes where families can pay an affordable mortgage, implement more affordable home repairs, and can potentially allow affiliates to add staff to their teams to build capacity to serve more families.”

Kitchen with white appliances.

Donated products from Whirlpool Corporation, like the donated refrigerator and stove in this Habitat Pinellas and West Pasco Counties home, help make Habitat homes more affordable.

A sustainable way of living

Whirlpool Corporation’s donated products have not only helped build more affordable homes, their energy-efficient appliances have helped Habitat homeowners lower their monthly utility costs. 

In 2021, Habitat conducted a study to estimate Habitat homeowners’ total energy savings and associated cost-savings resulting from Whirlpool ranges and refrigerators donated between 2018 and 2020. Based on those findings, the study extrapolated that over the duration of the decades-long collaboration the donated appliances generated lifetime energy savings of over 218 million kilowatt-hours and energy bill savings of more than US$24 million across the full network.

“At Whirlpool, we believe that everyone deserves access to safe and energy-efficient appliances because they make a real difference in lowering a family’s energy bills, which provides greater financial stability for their future,” says Deb O’Connor, Whirlpool Corporation’s director of corporate reputation and community relations.

“Our global social responsibility focus is on helping to ensure everyone can have a place to live that’s comfortable and nurturing so that families can really build their best life from inside those four walls, and to help build thriving communities,” Deb continues. “Our vision aligns perfectly with Habitat’s vision which is why this relationship has lasted 25 years and has had a profound impact for more than a million people around the world.”