The Energy Efficient Mortgage Specialists

Home Energy Ratings (HERS)

Home energy ratings provide a standard measurement of a home’s energy efficiency. Ratings are used for both new and existing homes. They often verify energy performance for the ENERGY STAR Homes Program, Energy Efficient Mortgages and energy code compliance. Homeowners who want to upgrade the home's energy efficiency can use the energy rating to evaluate and pinpoint specific, cost-effective improvements. An energy rating also allows a homebuyer to easily compare the energy costs and performance of the homes being considered for purchase.

A certified Home Energy Rater performs an on-site inspection of the home to identify 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. Diagnostic tests, such as a blower door test for air leakage and a duct blaster test for duct leakage, are also performed. The data gathered by the Home Energy Rater is then entered into a nationally accredited computer software program to produce a comprehensive energy analysis of the home.

The results of the analysis are then compared to the energy efficiency of a new standard built home and translated into a HERS Index. A HERS Index is very similar to miles per gallon (MPG) for automobiles and allows homebuyers to accurately compare the energy efficiency of homes they are considering for purchase. A standard new home built to the 2004 Energy Code has a HERS Index of 100. An ENERGY STAR certified home has a HERS Index of 85 and is 15% more efficient than a standard new home. The average existing home has a HERS Index of 130-215 and is 30% to 115% less efficient than a standard new home.