Searching for energy efficient homes is now easier than ever with a new dedicated Green Building Certification category in the Intermountain Multiple Listing Service. Homeowners can showcase and prospective buyers can search the following features:
- AFUE Rating: Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency is a measure of a gas furnace’s efficiency in converting fuel to energy, by projecting the average thermal efficiency for a complete heating season. A higher AFUE rating means greater energy efficiency.
- Cool Roof Rating: Evaluating and labeling the solar reflectance and thermal emittance of roofing products. Measured from 0 to 1 and the higher the value, the ‘cooler’ the roof.
- Energy Star Homes Cert.: Energy Star label means that the home has been designed and built to standards well above other homes. It means the home has undergone a better process for inspections, testing, and verification to ensure that it meets strict requirements set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Every energy star home features complete thermal enclosure system, complete heating and cooling system, complete water management system, energy-efficient lighting and appliances, and third-party verification.
- HERS Index Score: Home Energy Rating System is a measure of a home’s energy efficiency. It can tell you how efficiently the home is operating and where you can make modifications for greater energy savings. The lower the number, the more energy efficient the home. The U.S. Department of Energy has determined that a typical resale home scores 130 on HERS Index while a standard new home is awarded a rating of 100. So, if a home has a HERS Index of 70, that means it is 30% more energy efficient than a standard new home.
- ICC 700 Nat’l Bldg Std.: Rigorous requirements to meet the national green building standard.
- LEED for Homes Cert.: Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design is a third-party certification program. It is a nationally accepted organization for design, operation and construction of high performance green buildings.
- NAHB Rating: The green building rating system approved by American National Standard independently verifies that a residential building is designed and built to achieve high performance in six key areas: Site Design, Resource Efficiency, Water Efficiency, Energy Efficiency, Indoor Environmental Quality, and Building Operation and Maintenance. Addresses both new and existing home renovations.
- SEER Rating: Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio gauges the efficiency of an Air Conditioning unit. SEER ratings in new units start at 13 and go up. The higher the rating, the more energy efficient.
For those of you that made energy efficiency upgrades to your home last year, you may be eligible for federal income tax credits. Energy Star is a great source for additional information.