Mandatory Energy Audits - City of Austin TX

Real Estate Agent with Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - 0480809

Back in June 2009, Austin TX implemented Mandatory Energy Audits for every sale if you fit the following criteria:

  • Live in the City of Austin
  • Use Austin Energy
  • The house is more than 10 years old

For the most part, this really only applies to about 400k houses. Some houses in the City of Austin use a different Electric Company. Many houses that use Austin Energy don't fall within the city limits. It's not an "either or" situation. It's an "allCity of Austin Energy Audit" situation, and if you don't meet all 3 criteria, you don't need the energy audit.

This energy audit was set up for home owners/sellers to have to give a report to an incoming buyer about the energy efficiency of the home. The seller isn't required to fix or repair anything. It's for the buyer's informational purposes only. Many sellers couldn't afford to sell if they were required to bring their homes up to today's energy efficient levels.

Even though this Energy Audit has been moving along just fine for the past 5 years, Austin has now decided to make some changes with a new version of the audit. This new Energy Audit will be a more comprehensive assessment of the property that will include a section that lists "Potential Savings" if recommended changes are made. It will also list what energy efficient things the house already has in place.

I heard, not confirmed yet, that the new report will also give estimates on what some things will cost to change. This would scare me, as I then see it as a negotiating tool for buyers to ask sellers for more money, though the audit is not meant for the seller to make any changes not already done in the home. It might be a can of worms...

No word as to when these changes will take place, but it'll be soon. I'll keep you posted! In case you're wondering, the fine for not prividing the Energy Audit to a buyer is $2000.


**Are You Packed Yet?**


Donna HarrisREALTOR®
Donna Homes, Owner

www.DonnaHomes.comdonna harris donna homes austin tx real estate realtor homes for sale

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Tim Lorenz
TIM LORENZ - Elite Home Sales Team - Mission Viejo, CA
949 874-2247

Only a few cities in our area have a city inspection.  Have a great week.

Sep 16, 2014 12:37 AM #1
Donna Harris
Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - - Austin, TX
Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator

Hi Tim, Thank you for stopping by. The Energy Audits are not an actual City inspection. They are conducted by third parties and different companies charge different amounts.

Something I didn't mention is once you get an audit, it's good for 10 years, so even if you updated the house when you bought it, and decided to sell in under 10 years, you can provide your previous report and not pay for another one.

Sep 16, 2014 12:40 AM #2
Solar Valuations
Solar Appraisal

Great information to share Donna.  Energy audits are great way to determine what energy efficiency upgrades can provide you a positive return on investment. It is possible that a seller could do some of the upgrades and justify a higher sales price, but you need to do the analysis and choose wisely!  I always advise homeowners to conduct an energy audit before going solar.  Its possible that there are more cost effective upgrades like new windows or better insulation that will produce a better ROI than solar power.  

-Mike Pezone @solar valuations

Oct 17, 2014 02:52 AM #3
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Donna Harris

Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator
Are you Packed for Austin? I can help!!
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