Portland is at the forefront of innovation that aims to reduce our impact on the earth’s environment. At the beginning of the year, a new home energy score law went into effect for all of the single-family homes (including townhouses and some condos) in the city’s boundaries. If you’re selling your home, the new energy score law will affect you! Find out what you need to do.
Why a Home Energy Score?
Portland has a climate action plan. Part of that plan includes taking steps to reduce carbon emissions. This new law is part of that plan. Four other cities in the nation have passed similar energy score laws, and they have seen a reduction in energy usage. This is because when you show people inexpensive ways to reduce their energy output (which saves them money), they tend to do them.
Here is a complete copy of the administrative rules of the new law, if you want the nitty-gritty details.
How Will This Policy Affect Sellers?
Not much while Portland’s market is so hot. Right now, it’s still very much a seller’s market, and home energy score ratings will not matter a whole lot.
In a down market, homes with lower scores may not be considered as favorable as homes that have better scores. But Oregon has many incentives to help homeowners make their homes more energy efficient (thus improving their score).
Sellers are responsible for the cost of the audit, which is currently $150 to $250.
The report must be done before the home goes on the market and must be given to real estate agents and prospective buyers. Info about the home energy score will also be on the home’s listing. The fine for not completing the audit is $500.
What’s in a Home Energy Score Report
The home energy score is a reflection of the home’s characteristics, like its size and heating and cooling systems. It does not take into account the behavior of the home’s inhabitants.
The scale used for scoring goes from 1 to 10. A score of 5 represents the average home in the U.S. A home with a score of 1 uses more energy than about 85% of homes. One that gets a 10 uses less energy than about 90% of homes.
Other Things in the Report
- An explanation of the home energy score
- An annual estimate of how much energy the home uses
- An estimate of the total monthly and annual cost of the energy the home uses
- The current average annual utility retail energy price
Have More Questions?
If you have any other questions about how this new home energy score law will affect you, give us a call! We’ll be happy to help.