Since March 1999 in the ACT, there has been a requirement for mandatory disclosure of the energy performance of all existing residential properties that have been occupied and are offered for sale. An Energy Efficiency Rating (EER) is required for form part of the contract of sale of a property/unit. The star rating of the EER must be disclosed in all advertising material to satisfy the ACT Governments mandatory disclosure requirements.
There are two approved software types that EER assessors must use depending on the purpose of the EER.
- 1st Generation software (FirstRate4) must be used for established homes and must be used when a 4 in one package or an EER is ordered through ACTNOW Rapid Reports. This software can rate up to 6 stars.
- 2nd Generation software (BersPro V5, FirstRate5, Accurate) must only be used for new homes to demonstrate the building is compliant with minimum energy efficiency requirements for the building approval process. This software can rate up to 10 Stars.
The assessment is based on the thermal performance of the building material used. This does not include heating or cooling systems. Specific attributes of the house are interpreted and entered into the program, which generates a point score for that set of attributes; for example, insulated walls and double-glazed windows increase the score, while windows without curtains and an absence of ceiling insulation reduce the score. The total score determines the star-rating of the house.
A one point score approximates to a 1 percent increase or decrease in energy efficiency, and between 11 and 24 points increases the rating by one star. If a house is not energy-efficient, improving its value by 20 points will have a substantial effect on its overall efficiency.
The report will also include options to improve the EER of the dwelling. This can then be used to assess the costs involved with such options and can be acted upon by either the vendor or the purchaser.