Appraised Value and Energy Efficiency: Getting it Right
While location, design and price are a home-buyer’s main considerations, surveys show that buyers rank energy saving features and equipment (e.g., air and duct sealing, insulation, and high-efficiency HVAC equipment) as desirable features for which buyers are willing to pay more.
However, energy efficiency may be overlooked in the appraisal process for a variety of reasons, including a lack of access to quality data, underwriting impediments, and appraiser qualifications. Many appraisers may not be aware of the unique features of an energy efficient home, which may affect the value of a high performing home.
The Home Performance Coalition (HPC) recently worked in partnership with the Appraisal Institute and the Building Codes Assistance Project to publish a two-page brochure that educates home-buyers, homeowners, and energy efficiency contractors on the importance of documenting a home’s energy efficient features in a standard format so that they are taken into account during an appraisal. The brochure also provides contractors and homeowners with links to tools that can be used to verify a home energy efficiency upgrade has been performed, for example, the Building Performance Institute’s 2101-S-2013 Standard Requirements for a Certificate of Completion for Residential Energy Efficiency Upgrades and the Residential Green and Energy Efficient Addendum.
Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and Federal Housing Administration require appraisers to consider the energy efficient features of the home. There are many specially-trained appraisers that are qualified to assess the value of these features that are often hidden behind the drywall.
This brochure helps buyers, homeowners, and contractors understand the importance of choosing an appraiser qualified in assessing green and/or energy efficient homes. It also gives them the tools to document home energy efficiency improvements for appraisers and lenders.
HPC will be circulating this brochure to residential energy efficiency programs and contractor trade associations that can help educate homeowners on their rights. For more information, or to download the brochure, go to this link.
Julie Caracino is the Home Performance Coalition's Director of Research & Standards.
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