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Community and Q&A

Is a HERS rating mandatory in any state or city? And is the public benefiting from a HERS rating?

Matt_Salkeld_PEng | Posted in General Questions on

Are there any US jurisdictions where home energy ratings are a requirement for selling a home?

Normally the HERS rating would accompany a weatherization program or financial retrofit incentive program, as I understand.

So who in the public is using the HERS rating to compare the energy performance of one home to another home, say when purchasing?   Is the public using the HERS rating of a home to some benefit?


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  1. JC72 | | #1

    Some production builders such as Meritage Homes publish a HERS rating. In some areas there are "green" building programs.

    If you mean "in the public" as "potential homebuyers", for the overwhelming majority they are either unaware OR the local market doesn't recognize value in HERS.

  2. GBA Editor
    Brian Pontolilo | | #2

    Seems like its use and influence is growing, but I have yet to hear of a jurisdiction that requires it. Little bit of a sales pitch, but this video includes some stats that you may find interesting:

  3. CRF_GBA | | #3

    Montgomery County Maryland requires home sellers to provide an energy cost and consumption history, along with information on residential energy efficiency opportunities. I think that it requires a HERS rating. I know that the new homes I visit a year ago were advertising a HERS rating.

  4. STEPHEN SHEEHY | | #4

    I believe every state in Australia requires new construction to have a NatHERS rating. Some states require higher ratings than others. It's a simple system of star ratings, running from six ( essentially code minimum) to ten. The ratings are based on the house design and are set before construction.

  5. MAinspector | | #5

    Around half of the Cities and Towns in Massachusetts have adopted the Stretch Energy Code which requires a HERS rating (or energy start 3.1 rating) for every new home. Tough to say what the real world benefit is...the rating report is available to potential home buyers to see what the "estimated" utility costs will be. Since the HERS rater acts as a third party energy code inspector I suppose there could be some improvement in jurisdictions were energy code enforcement is lax.

  6. b_coplin | | #6

    When my spouse and I were looking for housing in Dublin last year, I certainly found BER reports (similar to HERS rating) useful.

    Energy is fairly expensive here, so it was an indicator of whether something at top of budget would be affordable. I also used it as a rough proxy for how much the owner/landlord cared about the property.

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