Since 1942, The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), has been serving its members, the housing industry and the public at large by promoting policies that make housing a national priority. NAHB’s various groups analyze policy issues, work toward improving the housing finance system, and analyze and forecast economic trends.
Safe and cost effective building codes are a priority issue for the NAHB, as well as for local associations like the Home Builders & Remodelers Association of Cape Cod (HB&RACC).
The following brief was published by the NAHB on August 26, 2013:
Mayors Resolution on Energy Codes Misses the Mark
As International Code Council (ICC) officials prepare to gather in Atlantic City this October to make their final decisions on proposed code changes to the ICC family of model building codes, a resolution recently approved by the U.S. Conference of Mayors shows why it’s so important for every NAHB member to help educate local political and code officials about our association’s positions on many key proposals. In late June, the mayors adopted Resolution No. 42, Endorsing the Maximum Achievable Building Energy Efficiency Improvements in the 2015 International Energy Conservation Code. While this resolution emphasizes the importance of energy conservation, the construction costs it references are unrealistically low and consumers’ expectations regarding the payback period for those costs are mischaracterized. It’s also important to note that 98% of the 180 mayors who endorsed the recent resolution currently enforce an energy code that is less stringent than the 2012 IECC, and 62% of these mayors’ jurisdictions enforce versions of the 2012 IECC that have been locally amended to weaken its stringency. The reason is that the costs have consistently outweighed the benefits of the code. Specifically, according to a Home Innovation Research Labs study, the increase in construction cost to comply with the 2012 IECC over the 2009 IECC is an average of $5,668 per home and will take more than 13 years to pay back. These figures are even higher in those areas that started with a less stringent energy code. Because every $1,000 increase in the price of a home keeps about 250,000 potential buyers from qualifying for a mortgage, adopting the 2012 IECC un-amended nationwide would keep more than 1.4 million people from affording a new, more energy-efficient home.
[The NAHB feels] that the 2012 IECC is broken and not cost-effective, which is why it has not been widely adopted. Code proposals by NAHB and others for the 2015 IECC will help fix the energy code by improving its flexibility, cost-effectiveness and adoptability.
You can read more about this, and other topics affecting the housing industry, at NAHB.org.
Consider attending an HB&RACC meeting to learn more about the legislative issues affecting our industry. The next general meeting is Tuesday, October 8th in Hyannis (6-8 PM). Please contact your Shepley sales rep if you would like to attend as our guest!
“Coming together is a BEGINNING. Keeping together is PROGRESS. Working together is SUCCESS.”