Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Mandatory Disclosure could be at our doorstep!

Residential Building Mandatory Disclosure (RBMD) is when a vendor is required to disclose their building’s energy efficiency performance at the time of either selling or leasing. This will most likely be incorporated into Section 32. 

At present, RBMD has been in the ACT for at least a decade. The Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (DEWHA) commissioned the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) to produce a statistical report modelling the relationship between “Energy Efficiency Rating and House Prices in the ACT”. The study found that energy efficient houses are likely to achieve a higher selling price than lesser energy efficient houses. Refer to our website to download the report.

At the moment, the Federal Government is looking to bring RBMD across all states and territories. The government has now commenced public consultation with relevant stakeholders and industry bodies.
RBMD is likely to commence from May 2012 and could be in any of the following form:
1.     Full assessment: full thermal performance simulation and rating of the house to be conducted by a suitably accredited professional. It will assess building performance and potential upgrades and recommendations.
2.     Simplified thermal assessment: will have less focus on thermal performance. It will provide potential upgrades and recommendations.
3.     Online self-assessment: to use an online tool by making assumptions on a building’s performance based on data entered about the building’s components. This can be either completed by the owner or a suitably accredited professional. This is less complex and general.
4.     Checklist assessment: the owner to do a checklist on building’s water and energy saving features. This list is to be disclosed at point of advertising.
5.     Mandatory rating with an opt-out feature: owner can opt-out not to assess their house and have their house rated at 0.
It is a hot topic at the moment, and I will keep you posted on the progress of RBMD.  Which option do you think will be introduced?

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