Energy efficiency put simply, means to do more with less. To increase efficiency is to increase the productivity of a process or product. Another goal of efficiency is to reduce waste and pollution. Reduce, reuse, recycle is a good rule of thumb.
When most people think ‘energy efficiency’, they think solar panels, wind turbines, or other renewable resources. These investments seem intimidating, so many forget the idea of efficiency altogether. The truth is that, while these are good investments for some, efficiency is a much broader term. One every day application is real estate. Poor energy efficiency results in money and resources being wasted. Whether you are a commercial business owner, a builder, a residential homeowner, or a renter, efficiency has an impact on you. Usually the solutions are simple and cost-effective. Increasing the efficiency of new and existing structures does not require a large investment or lots of time.
Wasted energy doesn’t only refer to electricity and resources. Energy includes infrastructure, time, and maintenance. In real estate, the most common perpetrators of waste are HVAC, windows, insulation, appliances, and plumbing. That is why specialized inspectors are necessary to spot and correct efficiency issues. States including California legally recognize and require energy standards, for good reason. Title 24, Section 6 of the California Energy Commission outlines these terms in detail. Builders and homeowners benefit alike. Therefore, the whole community prospers from the time, money, and resources that are saved. How, you may ask?
Through energy efficiency, the homeowner saves money on their bills because they are using less energy. Building systems are also less likely to deteriorate, which can result in replacement costs for damaged equipment. The builders save on construction costs. Codes are updated every couple of years so that building materials and equipment are up to date with current capabilities. Thusly, the real estate system adapts to new information and technology. On a larger scale, a state or nation who invests in energy efficient technology saves money. For example, the state of California has saved billions of dollars a year due to the California Energy Commission Codes.
An energy audit is performed by a licensed HERS Rater to give residential and commercial buildings an energy score. They will collect data on every aspect of the building to create an energy report. The state requires a minimum mandatory energy score, as well as mandatory compliance measures. Optional upgrades will lower energy bills, while qualifying the home for “points” from the state. Points translate into rebates, tax credits, and real estate value. The state is incentivizing efficiency. They will get a great return on this investment while helping residents to implement these codes. It is a win, win!
To learn more about services and incentives, reach out to the BarrierEnergy Team at 888-383-4377.