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Building Permit Discounts for Home Performance

Does anyone know of any cities/counties that provide discounts on permit costs for new builds/retrofits if the energy efficiency will exceed code? A carrot incentive to build more efficient buildings. Of course, in reality for implementation it would probably require a code building to have permit fees increase to compensate for the decrease that high efficiency buildings would receive and over time it would have to be reviewed and updated as the market is influenced.

Comments

  • Sean Lintow SrSean Lintow Sr Posts: 153
    edited March 24
    Not that I am aware of though if any place might have one listed it is: http://www.dsireusa.org/

    I may also add that some states have a stretch code (generally HERS based) that can lesson some of the AHJ oversight / make things a little easier
  • A common incentive is to expedite the review since that is a revenue neutral incentive*. Some of these expedited review incentives show up on dsireusa. But, I think a lot do not since they are usually a policy and not an ordinance.

    We also waive code review and inspection on energy elements of the IECC if the home is in the Energy Star program. This saves the builder a little time and coordination.

    * We used to offer this incentive for buildings registered in LEED for Homes and our regional green building program. However, we have retooled our review process and now all reviews are guaranteed to be completed in 5 days. We have a few plan sets approved on the first review.
  • David ButlerDavid Butler Posts: 3,889
    My county (Cochise) implemented a 'green building' density bonus in the subdivision ordinance almost 10 years ago (based in part on the Pima County (Tucson) green building code at the time, which was a point-based system). In Cochise County, rural subdivisions are nominally limited to 1 acre minimum size, and 4 acres for unregulated lot splits. With the density bonus, the minimums become 3/4 acre and 3 acre, respectively.

    At the time, I was deep into planning a rural 54-home net-zero subdivision (40 acres) with on-site wastewater treatment 10 miles north of Sierra Vista. Unfortunately, the local economy entered a depression on the heels of the national recession, essentially killing the new home market. Over the last two years, new home permits averaged < 5 per month. And that's for a county larger than 3 states. Now my parcel is worth less than 25% of what I paid for it back in 2008. Sigh.
  • Sorry about your land David, our little county did the same thing is 2008- issued 3 building permits. The residential market has somewhat returned here and I hope it does for you.

    Some time back several members wished that appraisal form would reference energy efficiency - don't know how many of you saw this article but take a good look here and pass it around. Resnet has been working on this and hopefully we can get other appraisal groups to do the same thing. https://www.probuilder.com/appraisal-forms-will-soon-include-hers-scores?eid=237693374&bid=1700166 - it certainly will help comps to have HERS scores, especially in places where the energy code allows HERS rating as a proof of compliance.
    Right now the availability of HERS scores ( or any other) is pretty slim, so including this information on the appraisal form will prompt more interest on the part of appraisers and Banks.
  • Terry PortierTerry Portier Posts: 19
    edited April 2

    Some time back several members wished that appraisal form would reference energy efficiency - don't know how many of you saw this article but take a good look here and pass it around. Resnet has been working on this and hopefully we can get other appraisal groups to do the same thing. https://www.probuilder.com/appraisal-forms-will-soon-include-hers-scores?eid=237693374&bid=1700166 - it certainly will help comps to have HERS scores, especially in places where the energy code allows HERS rating as a proof of compliance.
    Right now the availability of HERS scores ( or any other) is pretty slim, so including this information on the appraisal form will prompt more interest on the part of appraisers and Banks.

    This ship sailed around five years ago Sandra is behind: http://www.adomatisappraisalservice.com/
    In collaborations with AI/DOE with mega info on their sites to help builders and DIYs sell high performance homes, that for the most part is failing due to the banks failure to lend Green construction loans, implementing perm Energy Efficient Mortgages, and including lower cash flow utility bills to qualify buyers and homes. Without that the higher (8-20%) initial cost does not make sense and in most cases looses money.

    Here is a AI list of approved VSBRs. IMO a good indicator of the Green Market. If you call them as I have in my region many have taken the courses but have no experience. http://www.myappraisalinstitute.org/findappraiser/green_sustainability_residential.aspx

    AGREEA is the tool, HERs is only a part of: http://www.myappraisalinstitute.org/findappraiser/green_sustainability_residential.aspx

    The valuations are such a mess that some brokers and a few other national lenders have their own software systems based solely on HERs being all they understand, bypassing what AI recommends and qualified appraisers offer that are properly trained. Bankers themselves putting value of these homes is not where we want to be, although they have one of the most important parts of the equation $$$$. These lenders primary focus is perm financing, they "work with" local construction lenders" that depends on if the local lenders is willing to work with them. Usually not, most banks only work with whom they approve as appraisers. Any deviations from that has to go to a Director or BOD.

    Our jurisdiction only does site plan reviews and are against green buildings in fear it bankrupts builders since the infra structure is not trained despite all the info of the internet most refuse to read.

    I thought I read soon CA will mandate all new residential to be net zero or ready? They obviously have the infrastructure most nationally do not.

    Comps establish a market, to generate a market takes a prototype spec most builders won't risk.

    Getting a permit discount won't phase the real issues above.