The Home Energy Rating System (HERS) is a tool used in green building construction, as well as in home energy auditing and certification programs. It is a relative scale that measures a home’s energy efficiency and performance, as compared to other homes. The HERS Index scale ranges from zero to 150, and the lower a home’s HERS Index, the more energy efficient it is. A zero indicates ideal energy performance, while a 150 indicates poor energy performance. A typical existing home will generally achieve a HERS Index of about a 130, and a standard code-built home will achieve about a 100. EarthCraft homes must perform 15 percent better than code, obtaining a HERS Index of 85 or less.
HERS ratings are highly versatile performance indicators that can be used to:
- Verify that a home meet the requirements of green building programs like LEED® for Homes and EarthCraft
- Fine-tune the projected energy performance of a building prior to construction
- Qualify buildings for ENERGY STAR certification
- Provide verification for Energy Efficient Mortgages (EEMs)
- Benchmark and enhance current building performance