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2001 RESNET Conference

Presentation Descriptions

February 25 - 28, 2001
Florida Solar Energy Center
Coca, Florida

Conference Sessions

State of the HERS® Industry - What We Have Accomplished and How We Are Poised for the 21st Century
Steve Baden, Executive Director, RESNET
The HERS industry has made significant strides in the past three years: the adoption of a national standard for home energy ratings; adoption of workable, user-friendly energy mortgage products; and a dynamic partnership with the ENERGY STAR Home Program. The industry is now poised for the next great challenge - business development for raters to create a robust market for residential energy services.

"The Thin Blue Line" - The Challenge of Global Climate Change and the Role that Residential Energy Efficiency can Play
Philip Fairey, Deputy Director, Florida Solar Energy Center
There is a growing scientific consensus on the reality of global climate change and that it is largely drive by carbon dioxide production from energy use. Hear the latest findings and explore what role residential energy efficiency can place this issue of international concern.

"Got Energy? -A Look at Energy Prices Coming Into the 21st Century"
Steve Andrews, E-Star Colorado
National headlines have focused on spiraling energy costs and concerns over electricity reliability. Hear the an outlook at energy prices, where they have been, where they are going, and how it effects residential energy efficiency.

"Hitch Your Wagon to a STAR" - The Status of the EPA ENERGY STAR Homes Program and Its Plans for the Future
David F. Lee, EPA ENERGY STAR Homes Branch Chief
EPA's ENERGY STAR Homes Program has provided a major national incentive for creating market demand for energy efficient homes. What are the program's accomplishments and disappointments, and what is its direction in the future? What role can raters and rating programs play?

The Future of Residential Energy Efficiency Financing - Fannie Mae's Perspective
Robert J. Sahadi, Vice President, Fannie Mae
Fannie Mae is the nation's largest mortgage finance institution. It has made a major commitment to promote energy efficiency and environmentally conscious building. Fannie Mae will share its perspectives on future initiatives of the mortgage industry to promote energy efficiency and green home building and what role the home energy rating industry can play.

Tax Credits for Residential Energy Efficiency and Beyond
David Goldstein, Natural Resources Defense Council
Legislation was introduced in the last session of Congress to provide for federal income tax credits for energy efficient homes. The legislation drew strong bi-partisan support. The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) was a major driver in the effort. David Goldstein of NRDC will discuss what progress has been achieved and a projection of activities that will take place in the new Congress and Administration. In addition, a policy overview will be given of the potential that home energy ratings can play in the next Administration's energy policy.

"Blue Print for Action" - Developing Policy Initiatives to Take HERS Into the 21st Century
Barbara Collins, Executive Director, Energy Rated Homes of the West
The U.S. will have a new President. This session will provide an insight to the new Administration's and Congress' energy policy and initiatives.

Conference Break-Out Sessions

Rater Business Development

Rater Business Development I: Marketing of Rater Services & Elements That Should be Contained in Rater Business/Marketing Plan
Moderator: Jerry Thatcher, Energy Diagnostics
Speakers: Barbara Collins, Energy Rated Homes of the West
Dennis J. Stroer, National Energy Raters Association
The key to a successful business is having a dynamic marketing plan. This session will focus on how to develop a marketing plan for a rating business. Discussion will include choosing what elements to consider, defining products and customers, deciding the right pricing strategy, and developing a strategy for implementing the plan.

Rater Business Development II: "Successful Marketing Techniques" - How to Explain Benefits of Residential Energy Efficiency to Builders and Market ENERGY STAR
Moderator: Thomas Marston, Energy Services Group
Speakers: Travis Dunn, TSI
Ken Fonorow, Florida H.E.R.O.
Pattie Glenn, GreenSmart
A key to creating a successful rating business is to recruit builders to have their homes rated. Rating programs and raters in a number of states have successfully used the ENERGY STAR Homes to market their services to builders. This session will explore how to create successful partnerships with builders by effectively explaining the benefits of a rating and convince the builders to pay to have their homes rated.

Rater Business Development III: "Building Ratings as a Profit Center" 
Moderator: Wes Riley, Maine Star
Speakers: Travis Dunn, TSI
Ken Fonorow, Florida H.E.R.O.
Paul Rimelspach, Energy Design Alternatives
Jerry Thatcher, Energy Diagnostics
Energy raters have a solid grounding in building science and the principles of residential energy efficiency. The rating industry is not, however, "build it and they will come". Raters in a number of states have been successful in making their rating business profitable. This session will serve as an overview of defining ratings as a business venture and introduce participants to the elementary steps such as defining a target audience, defining your services and its value, creating a market niche, and marketing. It will conclude with a round table of the most successful raters in the nation to describe how they made their rating services a successful business venture. This session could then serve as a national model for a primer on rater business development.

Understanding and Marketing Energy Mortgages
Moderator: Thomas Hamilton, California Home Energy Efficiency Rating System
Speakers: Steve Baden, RESNET
Charmaine Brown, Fannie Mae
Barbara Collins, Energy Rated Homes of the West
A key market edge for selling home energy ratings is beneficial mortgage financing through an energy mortgage. This session will offer a primer for raters and rating programs on the energy mortgage products offered by Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, FHA, and VA; the benefits they offer to consumers; and how to use energy mortgages to develop partners and sell services.

"Teaming Up for Success" - Developing Dynamic and Successful Partnerships with Real Estate Agents, Mortgage Lenders, & Fannie Mae Partnership Offices
Moderator: Charmaine Brown, Fannie Mae
Speakers: Pattie Glenn, GreenSmart
Fannie Mae Puget Sound Partnership Office
To be successful economically, raters and rating programs must know how to forge effective partnerships with lenders and real estate agents. Mortgage companies in Nevada and Indiana offer closing cost discounts for homes that have been energy rated and companies in Utah, Mississippi, Vermont, and California are marketing the benefits of energy mortgages and home energy ratings. Fannie Mae has established partnership offices in most states in the nation. Major duties of these partnership offices include marketing support and forging partnerships to promote affordable housing. A key facet of their program is energy and environmental mortgages. Fannie Mae partnership offices have forged effective partnerships with rating programs in Colorado, Nevada, Indiana, and Ohio. Real estate agents represent a vital contact with the builder and the consumer. This session will explore the benefits of working together in a marketing partnership, the needs of each of the housing industry groups and how a rater can meet it, and the ways to approach other members of their industry to become active partners.

Updates on Developments in the HERS Industry and Residential Energy Efficiency Financing

EPA ENERGY STAR Existing Homes Program - Implications for the HERS Industry
Leader: Lena Nirk, EPA ENERGY STAR Homes Program
EPA has recently announced an ENERGY STAR existing homes program that could provide a marketing boost for energy upgrades of existing homes. This session will feature representatives of the EPA to explain the effort. Raters and rating programs will explore what business development opportunities the new program presents in their home states.

"A Marriage That Works" - The Linkage Between HERS and Energy Codes
Moderator: Linda Perry, Energy Rated Homes of Mississippi
Speakers: Michael DeWein, Building Codes Assistance Project
Richard Faesy, Energy Rated Homes of Vermont
Susan Recken, Arkansas Energy Office
There is a direct linkage between home energy ratings and effective implementation of residential energy codes. In a number of states, home energy ratings have been adopted as an option for demonstrating compliance to the energy code. Topics to be covered include how codes can drive rater business and the results of an Arkansas Performance Evaluation that demonstrated without proper performance measurement, there is little certainty that the code is being adhered to.

"Starting With the Basics" - An Introduction to Ratings, Energy Mortgages and the Role of Rating in Appraising Energy Efficient Properties
Moderator: Brenda Teaster, EnergyWise Homes of Illinois
Speakers: Michael Andreyuk, Southface Energy Institute
Linda Perry, Energy Rated Homes of Mississippi
This session is for participants new to the field of home energy ratings and residential energy efficiency financing. It will offer a primer on home energy ratings and energy mortgages, the new standard for home energy ratings, and how ratings can be used to add value for energy efficient homes.

BOPS and HERS, Can They Co-exist?
Leader: Sam Rashkin, EPA ENERGY STAR Homes
Speakers: Roy Harvey, MaGrann Associates
Kathy Howard, Guaranteed Watt Savers Systems
The EPA ENERGY STAR Homes Program has developed Building Option Packages (BOP) that allows a builder to demonstrate ENERGY STAR compliance through a prescriptive standard. Energy rating providers have the opportunity to provide BOPS to their builders. There are raters across the country that have been successful in using BOPS to create a marketing edge with builders who balk at ratings. This session will explore whether BOPS and HERS are mutually exclusive and what are the options in addressing the issue.

Introduction to BOPs and ENERGY STAR Homes New Labeling System
Leaders: Sam Rashkin, EPA ENERGY STAR Home Program
Jonathan Passe, EPA ENERGY STAR Home Program
The EPA ENERGY STAR Homes Program has developed Building Option Packages (BOP) that allows a builder to demonstrate ENERGY STAR compliance through a prescriptive standard. EPA has also introduced a new ENERGY STAR Home labeling system that empowers raters to print out ENERGY STAR labels for the builder. This session will introduce these EPA initiatives.

"New Business Opportunities for HERS" - Utility Deregulation Benefit Funds and Building America Program
Moderator: Ken Nemeth, Southern States Energy Board
Speakers: Barbara Collins, Energy Rated Homes of the West
Richard Faesy, Energy Rated Homes of Vermont
Rick Gerardi, New York State Energy Research & Development Authority
Two new initiatives can provide new business opportunities for raters and rating programs, Utility Deregulation Benefit Funds and the Building America Program. As part of the electrical utility deregulation process, a number of states have adopted "public benefit charges" that mandates a percentage of the utility rate base be used to support energy efficiency programs. In California, New Jersey, New York, and Vermont a portion of such funds have been targeted to support market driven residential energy efficiency efforts such as home energy ratings, energy mortgages and the ENERGY STAR program. This could represent a major funding opportunity for programs as their states undergo the deregulation process. This session will cover such topics as residential energy efficiency efforts supported through such funds, and models of effective programs. The U.S. Department of Energy is sponsoring the Building America program that provides engineering assistance to builders in designing homes that are very energy efficient but do not have additional construction costs. In Arizona and Nevada Pulte Homes have successfully built and marketed such homes. This session will also review the benefits of the Building America Program, the implications to raters, and how rating programs can become involved in the program.

Partnering with Green Building Programs
Moderator: David Wilson, Energy Rated Homes of Utah
Speakers: Dennis Creech, Southface Energy Institute
Bion Howard, Building Environmental Science and Technology
Robin Vieira, Florida Green Building Coalition
Green programs are growing across the nation and offer a business development opportunity for raters and rating programs. Green Building Programs presents an excellent opportunity for the rating industry and the ENERGY STAR Homes Program to foster partnerships with local homebuilder associations, the NAHB, and the green building community. This session will explore how the rating industry can participate in this effort and the role of raters in a green building program in meeting the quality control needs of a program.

"Selling Rating Services and Beyond" - Existing Homes Energy Improvement Financing
Moderator: Peggy McLeod, Northeast HERS Alliance
Speakers: Richard Faesy, Energy Rated Homes of Vermont
Jeremiah Gardner, Energy Rated Homes of Arkansas
Thomas Hamilton, California Home Energy Efficiency System
Energy Improvement Mortgages (EIM) offers raters, lenders, and real estate agents with a great business development opportunity. EIM's also offer the opportunity to increase home ownership and to increase the energy efficiency of the nation's housing stock. Unfortunately, too few energy improvement mortgages are closed each year. A number of rating programs are diversifying their services beyond home energy ratings. Rating programs in Alaska, Arkansas, and Vermont are sponsoring direct energy efficiency loan programs, and rating programs in New England are serving as professional contractors for utility programs. This session will focus on programs that have successfully increased the demand for energy improvement mortgages. It will showcase the innovative programs in Vermont and Connecticut, and the California program where HUD paid to have energy ratings and promoted energy improvements on FHA repossessed homes.

"Creating a Lean and Mean HERS Machine" - Energy Rating Pricing Strategies & Increasing Efficiency and Cost-Effectiveness of Processing Ratings and Providing Quality Control
Moderator: Anne W. Gross, Honeywell DMC
Speakers: Megan Edmunds, E-Star Colorado
Lynne Morgan, Energy Rated Homes Midwest
Tei Simmerman, Florida Energy Gauge
A key issue in business development is balancing the pricing of services and operating overhead. Two burdensome and costly task of rating systems are processing ratings and providing quality control of raters. This session will offer a panel of rating programs and raters to discuss how to develop successful rating pricing strategies and a discussion on how to stream line rating processing and quality control.

"Spotlight on HERS Success" - The Indianapolis ENERGY STAR Marketing & Louisiana HERO Program
Moderator: Douglas Walter, Kansas Building Science Institute
Speakers: Wade Byrd, Louisiana Department of Natural Resources
Mark Jansen, Energy Rated Homes Midwest
The session will focus on two very successful home energy rating programs: The ENERGY STAR Homes marketing that is taking place in Indianapolis, Indiana by Energy Rated Homes Midwest in conjunction with Fannie Mae, EPA, and the North American Insulation Manufacturers Association and the Home Energy Rating Rebate Program (HERO) being sponsored by the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources.

"Does Every Home Have to Be Rated?" - The Role of Batch Testing
Leader: Mark Milin, ICF Consulting
Speakers: Paul Rimelspach, Energy Design Alternatives
Terry Smith, Home Energy Ratings of Ohio
Many large production builders balk at energy ratings due to their cost and the logistics of scheduling on-site inspections. The EPA ENERGY STAR Homes Program has developed batch testing which allows the certification of ENERGY STAR Homes without an inspection if a certain percentage of homes built to the same specification are rated. A pilot program in Ohio has been launched by the state energy office to test the accuracy and effectiveness of batch sampling. The interim report on the program is due out in January 2001. This is a controversial issue for the HERS industry. This session will present the results of the Ohio study and discuss the pros and cons of the method.

"What's New in the Market of HERS Software Programs"
Moderator: Steve Baden, RESNET
Speakers: Megan Edmunds, E-Star Colorado
Philip Fairey, Florida Solar Energy Center
Michael Holtz, Architectural Energy Corporation
Ron Judkoff, National Renewable Energy Laboratory
John Kennedy, Geo-Praxis
There are at three HERS software programs that are available nationally that comply with the national home energy rating technical standards. With the adoption of national technical guidelines for home energy ratings, there is a need for a process by which energy rating software providers can demonstrate that their software program complies with the national standard. This issue becomes even of greater importance if federal tax credit legislation is enacted. This session will feature a round table with software providers on the features of their programs and will conclude with a round table of policy makers and software providers to discuss a fair, economical, and effective process for software certification.

"Turn on the Light and Let the Sun Shine In" - Round table Technical Discussion of Incorporating Lighting and Renewable Energy Sources Into the Rating
Panelists Steve Andrews, E-Star Colorado
Richard Faesy, Energy Rated Homes of Vermont
Philip Fairey, Florida Solar Energy Center
Bruce Harley, Conservation Services Group
David Wilson, Energy Rated Homes of Utah
In order to stay on top of technological advances, the HERS industry needs to consider the roles that lighting and renewable energy sources have with a rating. This session will feature a round table of technical specialists and software providers to explore the issues involved with incorporating lighting and renewable energy sources in a rating.

"Unit by Unit or Whole House?" - Round Table Technical Discussion of Multifamily Building Rating
Richard Faesy, Energy Rated Homes of Vermont
Philip Fairey, Florida Solar Energy Center
Ken Fonorow, Florida H.E.R.O.
Bruce Harley, Conservation Services Group
Michael Holtz, Architectural Energy Corporation
A new growth potential for home energy ratings is multi-family buildings. There are a number technical issues involved in the rating of multi-family buildings. This session will feature a panel discussion of raters and rating providers that have experience in the rating of multi-family buildings, as well as, software providers.

"Energy Mortgages Role in Combating Global Warming" - Opportunities for Pollution Credits
Moderator: Wade Byrd, Louisiana Department of Natural Resources
Speaker: Robert Sahadi, Fannie Mae
There is growing interest in the market potential of the trading of pollution credits for residential energy efficiency. Fannie Mae is considering such a program. This session will include a discussion on that potential and what it would mean for home energy ratings.