rules and regulations
A new energy agreement will affect both new and existing homes.
story > Kristin Brookﬁeld & Sarah O’Donovan
ver the past few years the focus of governments when talking about energy efﬁciency has been on carbon prices, big industry and international agreements. Yet underneath these ‘big picture’ debates the housing industry has been focused on delivering energy-efﬁcient homes to meet the requirements of the national building code and customers’ needs since 2003. Energy efﬁciency policy for housing has focused on a small number of actions over the past decade, arising from various federal and state governments agreements. The most recent of these was endorsed in December 2015, and
sets the scene for the programs that will affect both new and existing homes over the coming years. The Federal Government, along with the states and territories, signed on to a new energy agreement known as the National Energy Productivity Plan (NEPP). The NEPP takes the place of the 2009 National Strategy on Energy Efﬁciency and aims to encourage more productive consumer choices and promote more productive energy services. The plan includes three key actions directed at the housing industry which will affect homeowners, investors and tenants. Action 5 of the NEPP aims to improve residential building energy ratings and disclosure of information at the point of sale. For homebuyers, this means a better understanding of the energy efﬁciency of an existing home when it’s sold or leased to a new tenant. By understanding the energy rating of a home, owners can get a better idea of the expected costs for energy use in the home, and also an idea about the comfort of the home in winter and summer. This information can help homebuyers make an informed decision when comparing homes for sale.
BY UNDERSTANDING THE ENERGY RATING OF A HOME, OWNERS CAN GET A BETTER IDEA OF THE EXPECTED COSTS FOR ENERGY USE IN THE HOME
The housing industry has expressed support for a disclosure scheme for several years now. The Victorian Government has been developing an online rating tool, the Residential Energy Efﬁciency Scorecard, which is expected to be released as a voluntary option next year. The NSW
Using a licensed builder who has completed the HIA GreenSmart Professional training course offers homeowners and home buyers a way to ﬁnd a builder that can meet your needs when it comes to a more comfortable and liveable home.
Photo courtesy Overlander Homes