With the shift to green energy homes, and green building, many home buyers are interested in having 'green' home inspections conducted. Unfortunately, the reach of a general home inspector does not cover green inspections, commonly known as energy audits.
Home inspectors are licensed and trained to find deficiencies in the building envelope and inform you of any issues out of the normal for furnaces, hot water tanks other appliances. The type of inspections that look for green compliance in the home is called and energy audit, which is separate from home inspectors.
While the demand for energy audits are rising, some home inspectors are taking the time to become certified in energy audits as well. As it stands, a basic home inspector can investigate and get you verification of certain green material or installations, but they are unable to audit them. For instance, if the home seller is stating tat there are photo-voltaic panels (solar panels) installed, the home inspector can confirm they are installed adequately, but they cannot perform any other energy audits to check performance unless they are certified.
Finding green certified home inspectors who do energy audits in Canada can be difficult as there are very few with dual certification compared to the United States. The governing body InterNACHI (International Association of Home Inspectors) and the CAHPI (Canadian Association of Home and Property Inspectors) only certify inspectors to determine the building and property are compliant to regulation. To be a CEA (Certified Energy Auditor) or an REA (residential Energy Auditor) requires certification through the Association of Energy Engineers which requires strict credentials. However there is another type of Energy Auditor, the CEAIT (Certified Energy Auditor In Training) which allows those without the vast credentials, but knowledge to pass the CEA exam, to work as an energy auditor. This latter certification is most like the one that home inspectors would attain if they are dual certified.
If you are buying a home and you want the piece of mind that your potential new home meets both inspection standards and green energy standards, it is recommended that you hire a both a certified home inspector and an energy auditor.
To find green homes that fit your lifestyle, contact the Real Estate Girls today! (403) 617-2979