How Does an Energy Rating Work?

  • By Eddie Yandle
  • 03 Mar, 2017

Learn how an Energy Rated New Home Can Impact Your Home ownership Costs.

RESNET’s HERS Index has been getting a whole lot of press recently. It’s steadily gaining traction with builders and home sellers, who are  marketing their homes via HERS Index Scores . Homebuyers are now comparing houses based on their scores before they decide to buy.

After all, a lower  HERS Index Score  means a more energy efficient home, which translates into lower energy costs for both homeowners and potential homebuyers.

  • A standard American resale home is rated at 130 on the HERS Index.
  • A standard American new home is rated at 100 on the HERS Index.
  • A home with a HERS Index Score of 50 is 50% more energy efficient than a standard American new home.
  • A home with a HERS Index Score of 150 is 50% less efficient than a standard American new home.

If you’re a homeowner looking to sell your home, you have to get an energy rating.

What’s an Energy Rating and Where Can I Get One?

A home energy rating is a comparative analysis of how energy efficient your home is when compared to similar homes. In other words, a  certified RESNET Home Energy Rater  will conduct a series of tests on your home to ascertain how efficiently it’s performing. Based on the performance results, the rater will issue the home a HERS Index Score (which shows how well your home rates in terms of energy efficiency) and provide you with a detailed report highlighting the energy problems in the home.

What’s Tested during an Energy Rating?

A certified RESNET Home Energy Rater will conduct testing (i.e., an air leakage test, duct leakage test and combustion safety testing) in such areas as:

  • All exterior walls (both above and below grade)
  • Floors over unconditioned spaces (e.g., garages or cellars)
  • Ceilings and roofs
  • Attics, foundations and crawlspaces
  • Windows and doors, vents and ductwork
  • HVAC systems, water heating system, and thermostats

Why Get an Energy Rating?

As a homeowner, an energy rating provides you with a good idea about issues like:

  • How much your home is really costing you
  • How you can cut your energy costs
  • Discover cost-effective ways to increase your home’s comfort level
  • Help add to your home’s resale value

If you’re in the market to buy a home, well, there’s  no better way to establish the real cost  of one than by its HERS Index Score.  The cost of a home is more than just the mortgage – it’s also your monthly energy bills. By reviewing homes by their HERS Index Scores, you can tell which one is more affordable, sort of like comparing the MPG (miles-per-gallon) stickers on new cars.

The housing industry is changing and the HERS Index is leading the charge. Therefore, it makes good sense to contact a certified RESNET Home Energy Rater for an energy audit; as they say, knowledge is power and knowing your HERS Index Score can lead to a whole lot of power – literally!

The Villas News

By Eddie Yandle 06 Dec, 2017
Sometimes we all get so busy that we forget the loved one that is always waiting for us at the door.  During this holiday time, we searched for several articles that may help with keeping your favorite furry friend content during all the rush.
By Eddie Yandle 06 Dec, 2017

Try these 5 décor pieces that will make your home sophisticated and elegant

Want to know some of the easy décor tips to give your home a sober and elegant look? This article has got all the hacks for you. Learn some easy décor pieces that will make your home look sophisticated.

By Eddie Yandle 17 Nov, 2017
South Carolina is teeming with history, culture, and nature and no visit to Columbia is complete without taking some time to see what our neighboring cities have to offer!
By Eddie Yandle 17 Nov, 2017

Some Highlights:

  • Whether you are selling your home, just purchased your first home, or are a homeowner planning to stay put for a while, there is value in knowing which home improvement projects will net you the most “ Return On Investment” (ROI).
  • While big projects like adding a bathroom or a complete remodel of a kitchen are popular ways to increase a home’s value, something as simple as updating landscaping and curb appeal can have a quick impact on a home’s value.
By Eddie Yandle 17 Nov, 2017

Mortgage interest rates, as reported  by Freddie Mac , have increased over the last several weeks . Freddie Mac,  along with Fannie Mae,  the Mortgage Bankers Association and the National Association of Realtors,  is calling for mortgage rates to continue to rise over the next four quarters.

This has caused some purchasers to lament the fact that they may no longer be able to get a rate below 3.5%. However, we must realize that current rates are still at historic lows.

Here is a chart showing the average mortgage interest rate over the last several decades:


By Eddie Yandle 17 Nov, 2017
By Eddie Yandle 09 Oct, 2017

The Aspiring Home Buyers Profile  from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) found that the American public is still somewhat confused about what is required to qualify for a home mortgage loan in today’s housing market. The results of the survey show that non-homeowners cite the main reason for not currently owning a home, as not being able to afford one.

This brings us to two major misconceptions that we want to address today.

1. Down Payment

NAR’s survey revealed that consumers overestimate the down payment funds needed to qualify for a home loan. According to the report, 39% of non-homeowners say they believe they need more than 20% for a down payment on a home purchase. In actuality, there are many loans written with a down payment of 3% or less.

Many renters may actually be able to enter the housing market sooner  than they ever imagined with new programs that have emerged allowing less cash out of pocket.

2. FICO® Scores

An Ipson survey revealed that 62% of respondents believe they need excellent credit to buy a home, with 43% thinking a “good credit score”  is over 780. In actuality, the average FICO® scores  of approved conventional and FHA mortgages are much lower.

The average conventional loan closed in August had a credit score of 752, while FHA mortgages closed with a score of 683. The average across all loans closed in August was 724. The chart below shows the distribution of FICO® Scores for all loans approved in August.

Bottom Line

If you are a prospective buyer who is ‘ready’ and ‘willing’ to act now, but are not sure if you are ‘able’ to, let’s sit down to help you understand your true options.

By Eddie Yandle 09 Oct, 2017
Spirits Alive!
Thursday, Oct. 12
Tours every 30 minutes from 6 - 9:30 p.m. (Last tour begins at 8:30)

Grab your flashlight and join Historic Columbia and Elmwood Cemetery staff for guided tours presenting some of Columbia’s eerie and peculiar past by the light of the moon! Different than the regular monthly tours, Spirits Alive! Cemetery Tours feature costumed tour guides, snacks and other Halloween-related activities. These are some of our most popular tours and a great way to get in the mood for fall!
By Eddie Yandle 06 Oct, 2017
The Villas is about easy, MAINTENANCE- FREE LIVING!
 Take your weekends back and spend time doing what matters most. 
Brick luxury homes in a gated community surrounded by walking trails, tennis, golf, restaurants and shopping.
Woodcreek Farms!

Augusta III- MLS 429052-  $432,161
355 Turnwall Lane- 3 BR, 3BA, Bonus Room, 2967 Feet

Sawgrass III- MLS 429245- $395,139
361 Turnwall Lane- 4BR, 3BA, Bonus Room-2750 Feet



Torrey Pines I- MLS 432717-$382,323
362 Turnwall Lane- 3 BR, 2BA, Study/Dining, 2340  Feet


All Pricing and Plans are subject to change without notice.    All plans/renderings/photos displayed on website and marketing materials are conceptual and subject to change. Please see sales contract for your home’s specific sales specifications and design, as all homes pricing, options and features are subject to change without notice. Homes to be complete to industry standards.


By Eddie Yandle 17 Jul, 2017

G arden Workshop | Perennials in the Southern Garden

July 29  | 10 a.m. - Noon  
Join Historic Columbia for a Garden Workshop and learn about southern garden perennials and southern garden design, execution and maintenance. Special guest David Poston, senior horticulturist at Moore Farms Botanical Garden  in Lake City, S.C., will share some of his favorite garden perennials that thrive in warm, humid climates. In addition, Historic Columbia’s garden experts will be on-hand to share the ins and outs of show stopping perennials that are easily able to fit within your southern garden. More information here

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