Portland City Council Adopts Home Energy Score Policy

Chuck Colgan's picture

Portland, Oregon, City Council voted December 14 to approve a Home Energy Score Policy aimed at cutting utility bills and reducing carbon emissions. The new policy will provide home sellers and buyers with valuable information on energy use, energy costs and home improvements.

“Home energy scores is another key policy included in Portland’s 2015 Climate Action Plan. Similar to a miles-per-gallon rating on a car, it provides important consumer information that allows prospective home buyers to understand the true costs of owning a particular home. This critical information will lead to safer, healthier, more affordable homes that cause less pollution," said Mayor Charlie Hales.

Portland’s home energy score policy requires sellers of single-family homes to obtain a home energy performance report, including a home energy score, before a home is listed for sale in the city. Sellers will be required to include the home energy score and the accompanying report in any real estate listings and provide a copy of the home energy performance report to prospective buyers who visit the home while it is on the market. 

Providing vital information to home buyers

The cost of heating and powering homes is mostly invisible and unaccounted for in the home-buying process. Of Portland’s 160,000 single‐family homes, fewer than two percent have an energy score. Home energy scores convey critical information about energy use and costs to buyers and sellers of homes.

Home energy scores:

  • Allow home buyers to compare energy costs and performance between homes
  • Provide home sellers with information on money-saving home improvements
  • Afford consumers a measure of protection when making one of the biggest financial investments most people ever make

Source: City of Portland press release

Chuck Colgan