Zero Energy Ready Homes
The US. Department of Energy's Zero Energy Ready Home program certifies new and existing homes where most or all of the energy needs can be met with a renewable energy system. These are high-performing homes that are 40-50% more energy efficient than those built to base code.
The 2022 Inflation Reduction Act updated the 45L tax rebate program, adding additional rebates for homes that meet ZERH requirements. Combined with ENERGY STAR certification, up to $5,000 in tax rebates are available for each dwelling unit through 2033.
The ZERH program starts with ENERGY STAR as a baseline. Some additional efficiency requirements are included, such as EPA airPLUS certification, water management, photovoltaic-ready checklists, and others.
Achieving ZERH certification is easier than it may seem, making the full 45L tax rebate available without much additional work or cost. A home that meets current HERS Index targets is already very close to ENERGY STAR certification, and from there it's a small step to ZERH. In practice, these programs are mostly about documentation and verification—services that Vestal Energy provides as a program partner.
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