Our electric utility dramaticaly increased rates last fall and our all electric home in Texas is now a lot more expensive. The utility is offering an $800 rebate on a new heat pump water heater. Our older electric is in the attic space over the garage. Our plumber thinks that this area is too dirty for a heat pump. We would also need a new opening cut and framed to get the unit up. The last one required removing the stairs to get a wide enough clearance. The trusses over the existing stairs will not accomodate the height of the heat pump unit. He would like us to install the unit in a corner of the garage just below the current unit. We know he will need to elevate the unit to meet code even though there is no pilot light to deal with! He will need to relocate the recirculating pump and insists on providing a new one and will need to route the condensate. He also needs a metal pan and overflow drain to the outside. His SWAG was over $2K complete. We told him to just drain and disconnect the old unit and leave it in the attic since it is unusable space. (He cannot reuse the old pan either.) That took $150 off for the removal and disposal fee. I've priced the stand and other components and just don't get this figure. I'm still waiting for an itemized estimate. They do good work and guarantee parts and labor for a year but this seems a high price for that insurance. We can recoupe the price of the water heater in a year but the install will not pay off within the life of the unit. Any thoughts on having this installed by the big box store?