RESNET Board of Directors Adopts Formal Policy on Accessing and Sharing Data in the RESNET National Buildings Registry

May 15th, 2018 - Posted by emma@resnet.us under RESNET News

Since 2013, in order to confirm a HERS rating, the home’s building file must be entered into the RESNET National Buildings Registry (Registry). The registry contains invaluable data on hundreds of thousands of homes that have been HERS rated.
The Registry contains data that is considered sensitive or confidential. For this reason, the RESNET Board of Directors adopted a formal policy for the accessing and sharing of data contained in the Registry.
It must be noted that the policy strictly governs only the access to and sharing of data contained in the RESNET National Buildings Registry by third parties. This policy should not be construed to apply to how RESNET Certified HERS Raters or RESNET Quality Assurance Providers share the data on their own databases.
In order to streamline and clearly define the permissible access to and sharing of Registry data, RESNET has created the following data tiers, with increasing levels of sensitivity:
Tier 1- Public Data:
  • For an individual home, where the street address is known, data in this tier includes: HERS Index score, HERS Rating Company and Rating date.
  • For an individual Certified HERS Rater data in this tier will include: The Rating Company, address, Rating Provider and current certification status.
  • For an individual Certified Rating Field Inspector data in this tier will include: The Rating Company, address, Recommending Rater, Certifying Provider and current certification status.
  • Sharing of aggregate or bulk data in this tier can include: HERS Index scores, Number of Certified HERS Raters, Number of Certified Rating Field Inspectors, Number of HERS Ratings, Average HERS Index scores at the national, state, zip code or climate zone level, Energy Star Certification (where available) and date of rating.
Tier 2- Building Data: Registry data in this tier include all data from Tier 1, plus information about building components, energy consumption, annual energy savings, housing type, conditioned floor area, year of construction, and ID number.
Tier 3- Sensitive Data: Registry data in this tier shall include all data from Tiers 1 and 2, plus the sharing of bulk home addresses, tied to individual ratings.
RESNET receives dozens of requests for Registry data each year. Through these requests, RESNET has identified the following groups and organizations with whom Registry data may be shared or accessed, for the listed purpose:
Tier 1:
  • Tier One data that cannot be obtained through RESNET’s website may be provided to requesting organizations, upon the review and approval of the appropriate form by RESNET staff;
  • HERS Index scores and HERS Rating Company information shall be available to the public for specific addresses for the purpose of verifying a HERS rating on an individual home;
Tier 2:
  • Requests approved by RESNET for research purposes, may have data shared with that organization where determined by RESNET to be relevant to their research and in support of the mission of RESNET;
  • Data may be distributed to the RESNET Supplier Advisory Board members at the discretion of the Executive Director to support the mission of RESNET.       This data shall only be released in aggregate (not by specific address), and shall not be counter to the privacy interests of the parties of the rating, including Raters and Providers.
Tier 3:
  • RESNET staff shall have access to all data in the Registry for quality assurance purposes;
  • RESNET staff shall have access to data for research purposes that support RESNET’s mission and goals;
  • RESNET Quality Assurance Providers shall have access to the homes that they have entered into the Registry, for quality assurance purposes;
  • Governmental and Utility Third-party Energy Efficiency Program Administrators shall have access to data on the homes participating in their programs for the purpose of verifying HERS Index Scores, estimated annual energy consumption and estimated annual energy savings;
  • Multiple Listing Services (MLS) and MLS data providers, approved by RESNET, shall have access to home address, HERS Index score, estimated annual energy savings, estimated annual energy cost, rating date, HERS Rating Company, Energy Star Certification and Registry ID for the purpose of including this information in a real estate listing;
  • Appraisal industry groups approved by RESNET shall have access to the Appraiser Portal which contains home address, HERS Index Score, Energy Star Certification, HERS Rating Company, estimated annual energy cost, estimated annual energy savings, builder name, year of construction and date entered into Registry for the purpose of using this information for the appraisal of a home;
  • RESNET Energy Smart Builders shall have access to the HERS Index Scores, estimated annual energy savings and energy attributes for homes they constructed;
  • Local Building Departments approved by RESNET shall have access to HERS Index scores, estimated annual energy savings and energy attributes for specific addresses for the purpose of verifying energy code compliance;
  • Organizations conducting research on the valuation of HERS rated homes may have home addresses, HERS Index scores and rating dates shared with them for the purpose of using this data to determine market valuation or mortgage performance of HERS rated homes.
For Tier Three data requests, the RESNET Board shall approve the addition of any groups to those listed above and any modification to the purposes listed for each group.
The policy also established a streamlined and consistent process for obtaining Registry data, RESNET has also created a form for each of the three data tiers.
The policy was adopted after a public review and comment process. The comments received heavily influenced the final version adopted by the RESNET Board.

To view the new policy go to RESNET Policy on Accessing and Sharing Data in the RESNET National Buildings Registry.

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