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Ann Arbor Home Energy Rating Disclosure Ordinance in Effect March 12

Archived News Release: March 12, 2024 - ​Starting Tuesday, March 12, 2024, the Home Energy Rating Disclosure (HERD) ordinance takes effect. The HERD ordinance requires the seller of an existing single family detached or “side-by-side" townhome within Ann Arbor city limits to disclose a Home Energy Score (HES), outlining information on that home's projected annual energy costs to all potential buyers. Passed in September 2023, the intent of this disclosure is to provide customer protection by informing buyers of their potential energy costs and raise awareness of how energy costs, energy use and carbon emissions are connected.   

The energy rating required by the HERD ordinance is the Department of Energy's (DOE) HES. Developed by the DOE and its national laboratories, the HES provides homeowners, buyers and renters directly comparable and credible information about a home's energy use, like a miles-per-gallon rating for a vehicle. Using a 1 to 10 scale (least to most efficient), the score estimates a home's energy use and recommends ways to reduce the amount of energy, save money and improve comfort. The City of Ann Arbor Office of Sustainability and Innovations provides HES assessments at no cost to home sellers needing to comply with the HERD ordinance. 

Residents planning to list their home can visit to register for a free HES assessment or send an email directly to [email protected]. The HES assessment takes between 45 and 90 minutes to complete and reports containing the seller's HES will be delivered within three business days. Sellers also have the option of hiring a certified HES assessor to deliver this service. The DOE maintains a database where people can find local certified HES assessors, however, these services are not free.  

Once a seller obtains a HES report, which includes the score, the HERD ordinance requires the report to be shared with the seller's real estate agent, all prospective buyers and the city office of sustainability and innovations. The seller must also provide evidence that they published their home's HES in at least one public listing. HES are good for eight years as long as no major upgrades or changes are made to the home's insulation or mechanical equipment. 

As part of the City of Ann Arbor A2ZERO Plan, the city office of sustainability and innovations continues to work on policies, initiatives and programs to help our community reduce the carbon emissions from buildings while simultaneously improving health, safety, indoor air quality and overall comfort. The HERD ordinance is the latest of these policies. 

The City of Ann Arbor Office of Sustainability and Innovations was founded in 2018 and is guided by the Ann Arbor Carbon Neutrality Plan: A2ZERO. A2ZERO strives toward one unifying vision: Together, creating and implementing a just transition to carbon neutrality, community-wide, by the year 2030. Learn more at   

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Media Contact Information

Julie Roth
Office of Sustainability and Innovations Energy Manager
[email protected]

Ann Arbor has 123,851 residents, spans 28.97 square miles and is frequently recognized as a foremost place to live, learn, work, thrive and visit. To keep up with City of Ann Arbor information, subscribe for email updates, and follow the city on Twitter and Facebook. The city's mission is to deliver exceptional services that sustain and enhance a vibrant, safe and diverse community.