Thursday, June 5, 2014

Brace Yourself for New Housing Energy Regulations

There’s a battle of competing reports brewing in Lansing, Michigan over potential updates to the energy section of the state’s residential building code.

On one hand, backers of increasing the energy efficiency requirements in the code say that instituting changes recommended by a U.S. Department of Energy report would help homeowners save $230 million in energy costs annually by 2030.

But the state home builders’ lobby says not so fast, citing inconsistencies in the report that could end up adding unnecessary costs to the price of a new home and displacing potential buyers from the market.

The implications of a sweeping update to the state’s residential building code go beyond potential homeowners, builders and materials manufacturers, all of whom are awaiting a final decision on the revision process that isn’t expected to take effect until 2015.

At the heart of the debate is a recent Department of Energy report that recommends the state regulations be updated to the 2012 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC). By upgrading to the 2012 standards, the average energy costs for new homes would be reduced by 30.9 percent, the report stated. As such, homeowners could realize roughly $10,081 in energy savings over an initial 30-year period, according to the DOE findings.

CLICK HERE to read the MiBiz article

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