One of my clients was in the market for older homes last year, but she was concerned about how these homes would stack up in terms of their home energy rating. As part of her investigation, she made it a point to discover if a home she might be interested in had a home energy rating. (HERS)
Knowing that the home energy rating evaluates and measures the home’s energy characteristics, she could then easily compare the energy costs for the three or four homes she was considering.
A local Asheville company, Home Energy Partners had told my client, “The HERS rating is so accurate that the mortgage industry will actually loan you more money if it is used to make cost-effective improvements to your home. "
"Up to 15% of a home’s appraised value is available for every home that is bought or refinanced,” he explained. She checked THIS out, so she knew what was involved. The home energy rater inspects the home and measures its energy characteristics, such as insulation levels, window efficiency, wall-to-window ratios, the heating and cooling system efficiency, the solar orientation of the home, and the water heating system. The rater gathers data and uses software to calculate the results and then convert those results into “points”—the higher the points, the more favorable the rating.
As we narrowed down the homes my client found interesting, a bright “painted lady”, a Victorian on a shady Asheville street became a contender. However, we discovered that this home had only 57 points. That meant that this home was “below average” in its home energy rating. Even though there had been quite a lot of remodeling done on this property, my buyer opted for another Victorian home that had received a rating of 85, or “efficient”.
There are so many things to consider when you are in the market for a home, whether it is an older home or a brand new one. In terms of energy efficiency, REALTORS® can be a “resource to the resources”, experts, such as HERS raters who can make recommendations . A home is a big investment. We are here to help make it a positive one for you.
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