LEAP News: “Green and Energy Efficient Appraisal Addendum” Available to Homeowners through LEAP

Home Value Can Now Accurately Reflect Energy Efficiency Upgrades

Charlottesville, Virginia – Homeowners interested in selling their home, refinancing or applying for a secured line of credit have a new tool at their disposal to increase their home value by accounting for home energy improvements such as insulation, air sealing and duct sealing. The Local Energy Alliance Program (LEAP) announced today that it will offer homeowners the AI Reports Residential Green and Energy Efficient Appraisal Addendum through their new Home Sellers Package.

Learn more at https://leap-va.org/realestate

The Appraisal Institute, a global membership association of professional real estate appraisers throughout the world, administers the AI Reports Residential Green and Energy Efficient Appraisal Addendum. LEAP is qualified to complete the addendum for homeowners based on technical expertise and as the sponsor of Home Performance with ENERGY STAR in central and northern Virginia; completion of the addendum is a key piece of their new Home Sellers Package. The addendum allows for comprehensive documentation of the energy efficient features of a home and, where applicable, recognition of a Home Performance with ENERGY STAR (HPwES) certificate. The addendum makes it easier for an appraiser to correctly assess the value of those features. Until now there has been no standard approach for recognizing these features or assigning value, leaving them unnoticed and undervalued.

“Home sellers want to maximize the home improvement investments they’ve made, and home buyers want to see evidence of those improvements. Appraisers, realtors and mortgage bankers need a tool to make them “visible,” to factor them into the home’s appraisal,” said Cynthia Adams, LEAP’s Executive Director. “With tools like the ‘Green and Energy Efficient Appraisal Addendum,’ home energy upgrades like insulation and HVAC replacement can be valued.”

LEAP’s new Home Sellers Package includes an evaluation of your home energy upgrades, a Home Energy Score, completion of the AI Reports Residential Green and Energy Efficient Appraisal Addendum, and a one-page promotional flyer about your house to share with your realtor and prospective buyers.

Numerous studies and surveys in recent years have found that home prices jumped when energy efficiency upgrades were certified and that prospective buyers put a premium on these features and the lower energy bills they promise.

• Existing homes with certificates from third-party companies for sustainability and energy efficiency (i.e. LEED for Homes, ENERGY STAR, EarthCraft) sold for 4-9% more than similar houses without certificates and spent 18 days less time on the market, according to a study by the Earth Advantage Institute. Similar results of a 9% premium on “green home labels” was found by researchers the University of California -Berkeley and UCLA. 

• The National Association of Home Builders found that 90% of people say energy efficiency is important when buying or selling a house, and 73% say projected energy costs would sway their decision to buy a house.

“CAAR has worked closely with LEAP over the years to promote energy efficiency among our members, and we are pleased to have this additional resource in our community. It will help the listing agents get information on high performing homes into the MLS, and selling agents make sure there is adequate documentation for an accurate appraisal.” – Anne Gardner, CEO of the Charlottesville Area Association of Realtors (CAAR)

“In the home search process, it has become the norm for buyers to request utility history. People value an energy efficient home and are interested in the cost to operate the home in the context of the overall cost of home ownership. LEAP’s Home Seller’s Package will assist not only home sellers, but also home buyers who want to know about qualitative benefits that come from a high performing home.” – Greg Slater, Nest Realty