CHICAGO (August 14, 2013)—A new paper provides a pathway to document energy efficiency improvements made to existing homes so that appraisers, Realtors®, buyers, and sellers all understand and reflect the value of such upgrades in the real estate transaction. Co-written by CNT Energy and National Home Performance Council (NHPC), the paper shows how proper documentation, verification, and standardization of energy efficiency improvements can add value to a home that owners can recoup at sale.
“Survey research clearly shows that homebuyers are interested in purchasing energy efficient homes,” said Robin LeBaron, Managing Director of NHPC. “This paper shows how energy efficiency programs and real estate professionals can collaborate to ensure that efficiency features are fully visible and fairly valued during a real estate transaction.”
The full paper is available for download at http://www.cntenergy.org/media/Unlocking_Value_2013.pdf.
Those interested in learning more are invited to participate in a webinar on Wednesday, Oct. 2nd at 11 a.m. CDT. Details and registration are available at http://www.cntenergy.org/events/.
The paper, Unlocking the Value of an Energy Efficient Home: A Blueprint to Make Energy Efficiency Improvements Visible in the Real Estate Market, argues that greater transparency around energy efficiency in a real estate transaction will encourage more homeowners to invest in these improvements, since they will have a clearer indication as to how much of the investment might be recaptured at the time of sale.
The authors also point out a timely need for energy efficiency and real estate sectors to collaborate and help homebuyers and sellers understand the value of efficiency upgrades. For example, the National Association of REALTORS® Home Buyer/Seller Profile finds that a home’s heating and cooling costs are important factors for consumers. There is increasing demand for homes with money-saving energy efficiency features and improvements such as air sealing and insulation. In addition, there is a growing supply of high performing homes due in large part to successful efficiency programs across the country.
The paper outlines seven steps the energy efficiency industry must take to unlock the value of efficiency in the real estate market:
- Consistently document energy efficiency improvements
- Ensure data is incorporated into the appraisal process
- Work with the real estate community to reflect these improvements in local for-sale listings
- Capitalize on existing education and training opportunities
- Report on the growing inventories of energy efficient homes
- Develop standardized IT solutions
- Work with partner financial institutions
“Most of the data required for a more transparent transaction is already being captured by energy efficiency programs,” said Anne Evens, CEO of CNT Energy. “Standardizing and communicating this information makes upgrades visible and accessible at the time of a home sale, and encourages homeowners to invest in energy efficiency improvements. This helps efficiency programs meet goals, and benefits the real estate industry, homebuyers and sellers, and the environment.”
The paper also highlights several new transaction tools that, when implemented, result in more accurate valuation of energy efficient homes and home characteristics.
More information on unlocking the value of high performance homes can be found at http://www.cntenergy.org/innovation/valuehph/.
The National Home Performance Council is a national nonprofit organization created to support whole-home energy efficiency programs through research and stakeholder engagement. NHPC’s board of directors includes a wide range of energy efficiency stakeholders including: state energy offices, non-profit organizations, contractors, program implementers, real estate representatives, utilities, and manufacturers. NHPC’s mission is to address challenges that prevent the growth and expansion of the whole-home energy efficiency sector and communicate these solutions.
CNT Energy combines rigorous research with effective solutions to help consumers and communities control energy costs and become more energy efficient. We design and implement programs and conduct research in the areas of dynamic electricity pricing, building energy efficiency, and regional energy planning to achieve significant savings and job creation for low-income communities.
Emily Robinson, CNT Energy
Robin LeBaron, National Home Performance Council