signing or during the 10-day option period.
Potential home sellers may arrange for the
ECAD audit earlier, using the results to identify energy efficiency improvements made or
desired to differentiate the house on the market.
To comply with the ordinance, home sellers
work with certified energy professionals to
conduct the ECAD audit, which requires
specialized equipment and attention. Sellers pay
for, receive and share audit details with potential buyers. The audit includes assessing the
efficiency of air infiltration and ductwork, attic
insulation, windows, weatherization, heating
and cooling. Per the ordinance, this information
then goes to home buyers and to Austin Energy.
As the City of Austin continues to encourage
more sustainable practices, the ECAD ordinance benefits each side of a real estate
transaction. For home buyers, the energy
audit provides a helpful tool when evaluating
a home, whether looking for a place already
energy efficient or a new project for home
improvements. In addition, home buyers can
use the audit to anticipate any potentially
hidden costs associated with ongoing maintenance and home energy use, clarifying the
full cost of a new home.
For home sellers, an ECAD audit that
discloses an array of energy efficiency home
features translates into a more distinct and
attractive listing in the competitive real
estate marketplace. Savvy sellers and buyers
recognize that the energy efficiency features
identified through the ECAD audit contribute
to ‘green’ listings in the Multiple Listing
Service (MLS) and increase home value.
Austin Energy offers a variety of energy efficiency upgrade incentives to help homeowners
offset the costs of making improvements identified through the ECAD audit. Homeowners
who have made energy efficiency improvements
to the home through Austin Energy programs
may qualify for an ECAD exemption.
For more information about the Energy
Conservation Audit and Disclosure ordinance and related Austin Energy programs,
go to www.austinenergy.com/go/ECAD or
talk with a local real estate professional.
NOT READY TO BUY?
If you’re new to the area, living in corporate
housing or renting is a smart idea – and a great
opportunity to discover areas of town before
you decide to buy.
An excellent source for finding out the intri-
cacies of renting property in Texas is the
Austin Tenants Council. The ATC’s counseling
line at 512-474-1961 is open only for Travis
County residents, however, the organization’s
website ( www.housing-rights.org) has valuable
Texas property code details and tenant-land-
lord information and forms for residents of
No matter what you decide, those new to
Austin and Central Texas will soon discover
just how much the city has to offer when it
comes to housing, neighborhoods, amenities,
options, and much more.