Minneapolis to require residential energy disclosure
Consumers will have energy information before buying or renting
Starting over the next few years, homebuyers and renters will be able to learn energy information about a Minneapolis home or apartment before they sign on the dotted line. Today the Minneapolis City Council approved three policies that combined touch all housing types in the city:
- Residential Energy Benchmarking: A requirement that extends the existing commercial benchmarking ordinance to cover residential buildings 50,000 square feet and larger and requires an energy evaluation of properties with high savings potential. This policy will be phased in based on building size, with the first compliance date being June 1, 2019 for buildings 100,000 square feet and larger.
- Time of Rent Energy Disclosure: A requirement at the time of rent for residential building owners to disclose average energy cost per square foot. This policy will go into effect in 2021.
- Time of Sale Energy Disclosure: a requirement to include energy efficiency characteristics as part of the already-required Truth in Sale of Housing (TISH) report when selling a home. This covers information on the home’s insulation, heating system and windows. This policy will go into effect in 2020.
The goals of these policies are to reduce overall housing costs, ensure homeowners and renters have reliable information about their energy costs when deciding where to live, and reduce carbon emissions. These policies are recommended in Minneapolis’ Climate Action Plan and will help the City make progress toward its community-wide greenhouse gas reduction goals. Minneapolis joins nearly 20 other cities in adopting residential energy benchmarking for large buildings.
- Learn more about the requirements and rules for benchmarking and time of rent energy disclosure.
- Learn more about the requirements for time of sale energy disclosure.
Plug in to savings
Several programs are available to help property owners reduce energy use including:
- Can get a visit from the Home Energy Squad. The program is available at a low cost for all homes, and the City offers residents in Green Zones no-cost visits to improve energy efficiency for single-family homes, duplexes, triplexes and fourplexes. At the visit, energy experts identify opportunities to save energy and make some energy-efficient improvements on the spot.
- Can access zero-interest financing made available from the City for eligible energy efficiency improvements.
- Rental property owners:
- Can participate in the Multifamily Building Efficiency Program. This free, utility-funded program provides multifamily buildings (five or more units) with an assessment to identify energy-saving opportunities, directly install several energy-saving measures for immediate savings, and offer financial incentives for buildings that meet energy saving targets including covering up to 80 percent of the costs for energy upgrades in qualifying low-income housing.
- Can participate in the 4d Affordable Housing Incentive Program, which helps apartment building owners obtain property tax reductions if they agree to keep 20 percent or more of their rental units affordable. The program also helps owners make existing buildings greener through cost sharing for energy efficiency improvements and solar installations.
- Large multifamily and commercial properties can participate in the Green Cost Share energy efficiency program. The City offers a funding match of 20-30 percent up to $50,000 (not to be repaid) for residential buildings with four units or more and commercial buildings that increase energy efficiency.
Feb. 15, 2019
Published Feb 15, 2019