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121 Massachusetts Municipalities Adopts HERS Index Score for Local Building Energy Code

Oct 10, 2012

Municipalities across the state of Massachusetts have adopted a HERS Index Score requirement for their building energy codes.  The communities adopted the HERS Index Score target has part of the State of Massachusetts “Stretch Energy Code.”  The Stretch Energy Code was adopted by the State Board of Building Regulations and Standards to provide a more energy efficient alternative to the standard energy provisions of the code that a municipality may choose to adopt.   The Stretch Energy Code is Appendix 115 AA of the “Massachusetts Amendments to the International Building Code 2009.”

The Massachusetts Stretch Code requires that all new residential buildings that are three stories or less must achieve a targeted HERS Index Score as verified by a certified RESNET Home Energy Rater.  The HERS Index Score is driven by the size of the home.  Residential buildings that are less than 3,000 sq. ft. must have a HERS Index Score or 70 or less.  Homes that are larger than 3,000 sq. ft. must have a HERS Index Score of 65 or less.  The code requires that in addition to the HERS Index Score the rater must complete the ENERGY STAR Qualified Homes Thermal Bypass Inspection Checklist.  To down load the code go to Massachusetts Stretch Code

The municipalities that have adopted the HERS Index requirement can be viewed at Municipalities Adopting Massachusetts Stretch Code

From Idaho to Massachusetts state and local code jurisdictions have incorporated a HERS Index Score option to their building energy codes.  Home energy raters, builders and efficiency advocates played a key role in this development.

To provide a resource for other communities RESNET has posted a new web page “The HERS Index as a Performance Path to Building Energy Codes”.    The web page includes information on why code jurisdictions are adding a HERS Index Score target as a compliance option to their energy codes and a listing of jurisdictions that have a HERS Index Score option with links to the local codes.  To view the web page go to The HERS Index as a Performance Path to Building Energy Codes