In this issue:


A Letter to our HPwES Stakeholders

There are times in the histories of industries when innovations serve as catalysts that spark exponential growth. Those catalysts typically improve efficiency or the performance of a product or service to a point where impediments to growth are substantially mitigated.

The development and deployment of HPXML is such a catalyst in the residential energy efficiency industry.  Simply put, HPXML (based on the BPI-2100 and 2200 standards) is a set of common definitions for the attributes of the systems in a home and the computing language that facilitates the quick and easy transfer of home-related data between different market actors.  Without HPXML, home improvement contractors cannot easily exchange data with partnering businesses, energy efficiency programs, the real estate market, and the financial sector. 

Leaders in the home performance community developed HPXML with the support of the private, utility, and public sectors.  To expedite its deployment in the market, Home Performance with ENERGY STAR developed an HPXML Implementation Guide, found at www.energystar.gov/hpxml. The guide will help program administrators and software developers integrate HPXML into their operations and products.  The U.S. Department of Energy expects that expanded use of HPXML will:

  • Reduce the time and cost of collecting and transferring home and energy-related data;
  • Foster new and strengthen existing organizational relationships within the residential supply chain;
  • Increase the transparency of energy efficiency work to facilitate deeper market penetration of energy efficiency products and services;
  • Enhance the ability to quantify energy savings through standardized, data-rich EM&V methods; and
  • Improve the quality assurance systems and practices needed to efficiently support, measure and verify energy performance.

HPwES is looking forward to collaborating again with members of the industry at the ACI National Home Performance Conference. To facilitate discussions, HPwES will hold a Partner Meeting open to all stakeholders on May 4th.  This interactive pre-conference meeting and workshop will focus on demonstrations of progress toward valuing home performance in both energy and non-energy markets.  Specifically, we will talk about monetizing energy and health benefits of home performance, as well as understanding the supply chain dynamics of home performance service delivery, identifying quality objectives to solve pain points in a quality management system, and exploring the most appropriate financing solutions for different markets and demographics.  Join us and your colleagues from around the country as we talk about these issues to better understand how to grow home performance. More information on registration can be found online.

Finally, I want to extend my gratitude and congratulations to all of our ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year award winners. Their exemplary implementation and promotion of Home Performance with ENERGY STAR make them leaders in the home performance field.  Their leadership will result in significant growth of HPwES in their markets and offer examples for their counterparts in other programs to emulate. Read on for more about the organizations that won and their accomplishments.


Ely Jacobsohn
U.S. Department of Energy
Home Performance with ENERGY STAR Program Manager

Connect with HPwES at ACI National

Home Performance with ENERGY STAR Partner Meeting
On May 4th HPwES will host a Partner Meeting in New Orleans, Louisiana. The day includes a plenary with presentations on valuing home performance in energy and other markets and breakout sessions on a variety of topics. Register for the Partner Meeting and receive a $100 discount off conference registration.

Conference Sessions
The HPwES team will present on a variety of subjects at ACI National in New Orleans. Team members will lead sessions on HPwES basics, partnership models, quality assurance and HPwES data. See the ACI agenda for more details.

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Alaska Housing Finance Corporation becomes a HPwES Sponsor

HPwES is pleased to welcome the Alaska Housing Finance Corporation (AHFC) as our newest Sponsor! We look forward to learning a lot from its leadership and implementation strategy.  AHFC is the second state housing finance corporation to become a HPwES Sponsor.

A public corporation run by the State of Alaska, AHFC provides housing, finance and energy programs statewide. Its two energy efficiency programs, the Home Energy Rebate Program and the Weatherization Program, will be included in its HPwES Program.  Since 2008, the Alaska State Legislature has appropriated over $600 million for energy efficiency retrofits through the two programs, which have improved more than 36,000 homes. 

The Home Energy Rebate Program provides Alaskan homeowners, regardless of income, up to a $10,000 rebate for pre-approved energy efficiency improvements. Since its launch in 2008, AHFC’s Home Energy Rebate program has provided rebates for more than 10% of the owner occupied houses in Alaska. The Weatherization Program provides free energy efficiency improvements for homeowners or renters who meet income eligibility requirements.

AHFC believes HPwES will bring value to its energy efficiency programs.  AHFC and HPwES are a natural fit because the goals of HPwES are nearly identical to the goals of AHFC’s Home Energy Rebate and Weatherization Programs.  The program will help homeowners improve the efficiency and comfort of their homes using a systematic, whole-house approach.  HPwES tools and resources, along with the ENERGY STAR brand, are assets AHFC can now access to expand its program and benefit Alaskans. AHFC found value in implementing HPwES’s Quality Management System (QMS) approach to quality assurance, which helps ensure customers receive the best possible service, energy ratings are performed accurately, and the overall efficiency of Alaska’s housing improves.

For more information on AHFC, please visit http://www.ahfc.us/.

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HPwES Finishes 2014 with a Stellar Fourth Quarter

The fourth quarter is always important to the home performance industry. Falling temperatures, drafts and high energy bills drive homeowners to improve home energy efficiency. HPwES Sponsors reported over 27,800 projects in the fourth quarter--a 20% increase over the fourth quarter of 2013 and 25% increase over the third quarter of 2014. While end-of-year weather conditions were favorable to the HPwES Program, the success truly belongs to Sponsors, implementation contractors, and participation contractors.

Notable highlights from fourth quarter reports include:

  • Massachusetts utilities completed 11,413 projects, their best quarter yet.
  • Advanced Energy more than tripled its output. From 192 projects in 2013, it reached 654 in 2014.
  • Illinois Home Performance with ENERGY STAR continues to grow at an impressive pace, achieving over 70% growth. It reported 3,023 projects in 2014, compared to 1,738 projects in 2013.
  • SWEPCO continues its massive project count growth. It has grown over 1300% in 2014 with 1,026 projects, compared to 70 projects in 2013.

In calendar year 2014, HPwES Sponsors completed 93,220 projects, the Program’s most productive year yet. The project count grew 15% compared to 2013. Four Sponsors completed over 5,000 projects each and 18 Sponsors completed over 1,000 projects each.  

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Congratulations to the ENERGY STAR Award Winners

Seven Home Performance with ENERGY STAR Sponsors and Partners were recognized for their outstanding contributions to energy efficiency and to DOE and EPA programs.

Each year, DOE and EPA honor a select group of organizations for their leadership in the energy efficiency movement. The following organizations received awards for their work to advance Home Performance with ENERGY STAR:

AEP Southwestern Electric Power Company for generating approximately 1.7 gigawatt-hours in energy savings;

Arizona Public Service for implementing recently adopted standards for data standards and transfer;

The Columbia Association for generating a 93 percent HPwES assessment-to-grade conversion ratio when home performance improvements are recommended;

Efficiency Vermont for sustaining high production in the HPwES program as a result of adjustments in 2013 for a market turnaround in 2014;

Focus on Energy for implementing a HPwES program with a robust incentive structure and an advisory group of contractors offering improvements to the program;

Illinois Energy & Recycling Office at the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO), for completing 2,971 HPwES projects, each achieving at least 15 percent energy savings; and

New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) for converting 32 percent of HPwES assessments to home performance improvement projects.


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New Home Energy Score Requirements Broaden the Pool of Assessors

Earlier this year DOE announced the release of Home Energy Score Simulation Training, a new online simulation tool that provides free, targeted training and testing to individuals interested in providing the Home Energy Score – a standard energy efficiency assessment and score generated only by qualified professionals. The Home Energy Score Simulation Training (the Sim), developed by Interplay Learning, lets candidates walk through different virtual homes (colonial, ranch, and townhome) with numerous combinations of energy-related characteristics (e.g., heating, cooling, hot water equipment; wall construction; insulation levels; footprints).

The Home Energy Score is particularly well suited for 3-D simulation training and testing: the nature of the work is diagnostic and procedural, the content is cognitive, variability is prevalent, and live training or testing would be expensive and impractical. The Sim trains candidates on skills specifically required to score homes, lets them learn at their own pace, and allows them to encounter a wide range of situations that reflect the variability of conditions in homes. Self-evaluation features in the Sim help candidates identify areas where they need to focus more attention. Once confident that they know how to collect required information accurately, candidates can proceed to the testing mode in the same 3-D simulation environment.

With this enhanced training and testing, the program will now recognize a wide range of credentials, including those held by home inspectors, HVAC contractors, and other professionals in building-related fields. For the list of acceptable credentials, visit homeenergyscore.gov.

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Contractor Corner

Participating contractors drive the success of HPwES across the country; they are the key to engagement, education, and the growth of the home performance market. The new “Contractor Corner” in the HPwES Newsletter will be a venue for highlighting innovative HPwES participating contractors across the country.

Congratulations to the Century Club Contractors!

Each of the following HPwES participating contractors completed 100 or more projects in 2014. Keep up the great work!

Austin Energy

Energy Guys
Fox Service Company
Green Collar Operations
McCullough Heating and AC
Strand Brothers Service Experts

Columbia Water & Light

Chapman Heating & Air Conditioning
Nemow Insulation Company

Eversource and the United Illuminating Company
A Plus Installation
Aiello Home Services
BCB Conservation Group, LLC
Climate Partners
Competitive Resources, Inc.
Energy Efficiencies Solutions, LLC
Energy PRZ
Energy Resource Group Technologies, Inc.
Fox Heating Services, LLC
Greenbuilt Connecticut
Gulick Building and Development
Handyman Express Energy Solutions, LLC
Hoffman Fuel
Home Doctor of America
Lantern Energy, LLC
NECS
New England Smart Energy Group
Next Step Living
R Pelton Builders, Inc.
Santa Energy
Tri-City Home Energy Services, LLC
Uplands Construction Group, LLC
Victory Energy Solutions
Wesson Energy, Inc.

Consumers Energy
Dr. Energy Saver – Lansing
SIR Home Improvements
The Insulation Man, Inc.

District of Columbia Sustainable Energy Utility
Elysian Energy, LLC*

Dominion East Ohio
Boak and Sons
Farrell Insulation

EmPOWER Maryland
Baltimore Gas & Electric, Delmarva Power, Potomac Edison, Potomac Electric Power Company, and Southern Maryland Electric Cooperative
DeVere Insulation Home Performance
EDGE Energy*
Efficient Home, LLC
Elysian Energy*
Energy Services Group

Energy Trust of Oregon
Green Savers USA, Inc.
Neil Kelly Company Inc.

Entergy New Orleans
Diversified Energy

Focus on Energy
Duerst Insulation Technicians
Highland Building Consultants
Insulation Technologies / Intec
On-Site Performance Testing
Rock and Tait Exteriors
Rockweiler Insulation, Inc.
S&E Insulation
St. Croix Energy Solutions, Inc.
Weatherization Services, LLC

FSL Home Improvement
Convenient Home Service
Custom Energy Design, Inc.
Eco Rehab, LLC
Extreme Energy Solution
Green ID
Ideal Energy, LLC
Jaycox Air Conditioning
Marshall Insulation, LLC
Reeis AZ, Inc.

Illinois Home Performance with ENERGY STAR
Arc Insulation
Assured Energy Solutions
DNR Construction
Green Attic Insulation
Green Home Weatherization
Home Comfort Insulation

Local Energy Alliance Program
EDGE Energy*

PSEG Long Island
Econo-Therm Insulation
Green Audit USA, Inc.
Home Performance Technologies, Inc.
Home Star Energy Services
Powersmith
Solar Energy Haus
Triple H Contracting, Inc.

Metropolitan Energy Center
Affordable Energy Solutions
Green Comprehensive Audit
Green Improvement Consulting
Smart Energy Solutions
Star Energy Consultants, LLC

National Grid (Rhode Island)
Affordable Building and Weatherization, Inc.
Aten Energy
Bruin Corp
Calyx Retrofit
Cross Insulation
Energy Efficient Exteriors, Inc.
Energy Geeks
Globex Industries, Inc.
Greenwich Insulation
Insulate 2 Save
Retrofit Insulation
RI Insulation
Statewide Insulation
Superior Insulation

New Jersey Board of Public Utilities
Alber Service Co
Allied Construction, LLC
Arctic Air Conditioning
BC Express, Inc.
Bovio Heating Plumbing Cooling Insulation
Building Sciences, LLC
Energy Analysis Group, LLC
Home Energy Matters, Inc.
Hutchinson Plumbing, Heating & Cooling
Laury Heating Cooling, LLC
Mark Group of New Jersey, Inc.
Mid-State Heating and Cooling, Inc.
Rubino Service Co.
The Insulation Group

New York State Research and Development Authority
BrightHome Energy Solutions, LLC
Bruni & Campisi Energy & Conservation Services, LLC
Buffalo Energy, Inc.
Foam It Insulation
Green Audit USA, Inc.
GreenSeal Weatherization
Home Comfort Heating & Cooling
Home Energy Performance by HALCO
Isaac Home Energy Performance
J Synergy Green
New York Homeowners Construction Co, LLC
Powersmith
Standard Insulating Co., Inc.
Town Insulation
Triple H Contracting, Inc.
True Energy Solutions, Inc.
ZeroDraft of CNY, Inc.

Public Service Company of Oklahoma
Air Assurance
Airco Services, Inc.
Big Ductin', LLC
SRI Energy

South Carolina Electric & Gas
Carolina Green Energy Systems, LLC
Cool Care, Inc.

Southwestern Electric Power Company
KMT Group, Inc.
NECS, LLC
SEAL Energy Solutions

* Denotes a winner that completed their projects with more than one Sponsor.

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The Home Performance with ENERGY STAR Team
www.energystar.gov/hpwes
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