Energy Conservation Audit and Disclosure (ECAD) Ordinance
for Multifamily Properties
The Energy Conservation Audit and Disclosure (ECAD) ordinance requires Austin multifamily properties with five or more units that receive electricity from Austin Energy to have an energy audit in the calendar year in which the property is 10 years old. The Energy Audit is valid for 10 years and must be disclosed to current and prospective tenants.
Energy Audit Results
After the ECAD energy audit is completed, the multifamily property owner receives the Energy Audit Results from the registered energy auditor. The results must be posted at the property for current residents, available to residents upon request, and provided to prospective residents at the time of lease application. View a sample report of Energy Audit Results.
City staff perform periodic inspections to multifamily properties to ensure the quality of the program.
The Energy Guide
Prospective tenants will review the property's Energy Audit Results when they apply for a lease. This review should take place before any application fees are accepted by a property. Included with the audit results is the Energy Guide for the property. The Energy Guide provides prospective tenants with an estimate of the average monthly energy cost at that property. The Energy Guide can be used as a tool to compare similar properties. View a sample Energy Guide and a detailed explanation.
A multifamily property does not need an audit if it meets one of the following:
- The property was less than 10 years old on June 1, 2009.
- The owner has completed comprehensive duct remediation work through the Austin Energy rebate offering within 10 years. Learn more about Multifamily Rebates.
- The owner has replaced air conditioning equipment for all units through the Austin Energy rebate offering within 10 years. Learn more about Multifamily Rebates.
View a sample Energy Audit Exemption certificate.
Definition of a Multifamily Property
The ECAD ordinance defines a multifamily property as a property with five or more dwelling units. If your building has four or fewer dwelling units, see the ECAD Ordinance for Single-Family Homes.
An individual owner of a single condominium unit at a single property must disclose an energy audit under the rules for single-family residences unless an Exemption exists.
Owners of five or more condominium units at a single property must follow multifamily rules for energy audit disclosure unless an Exemption exists.
Multifamily Property Audit
If the property is not exempt or does not qualify for a variance, it needs an ECAD audit. The audit should take place 10 years after the construction of the facility is complete. Audits are valid for 10 years.
The ECAD audit must be performed by an auditor who is a certified Residential Energy Services Network (RESNET) Rater or a Building Performance Institute (BPI) Building Analyst Professional. See a list of certified ECAD auditors who have registered with Austin Energy.
Energy Use Averages
The average energy use per square foot is calculated annually based on categories that take into consideration the energy code in place during construction and the type of energy used at the property.
The energy and building categories are:
- Fuel type
- All electric
- Gas and electric
- Energy code
- No national code - Prior to 1985
- Model Energy Code - 1985 through 2001
- International Energy Conservation Code 2002 to present
|Usage per Sq. Ft.
||Built prior to 1985
||Built 1985 and 2001
||Built 2002 to present
|Gas and Electric
High Energy-Use Multifamily Properties
A high energy-use property uses more than 150% of the average energy of other multifamily properties in the Austin Energy service area. Average energy use is measured in square feet and is explained in the section above, Energy Use Averages. The ordinance requires identified high energy-use multifamily properties to reduce energy use by 20%.
Prospective tenants must be provided with the property’s high energy-use notice when they apply for a lease. View a sample Notice of a High Energy-Use Property report.
Conducting an energy audit identifies energy cost-saving opportunities. The energy audit assesses the performance of air ducts, insulation, and the amount of window glass area with direct solar heat gain. Improvements in these areas can increase the value of the property, enhance tenant satisfaction, and attract new tenants.
To help offset the cost of improvements, Austin Energy is offering incentives. The incentives can cover up to 80% or more of associated costs and are available for replacing air conditioning units, sealing leaky air duct systems, adding attic insulation, and taking other cost-effective efficiency measures. Incentives are available to high energy-use properties to assist them in reducing their energy use by 20%. Learn more about Multifamily Rebates.
Non-compliance with the ECAD ordinance, Austin City Code, Chapter 6-7, is a Class C misdemeanor. Customers may report violations to the City of Austin Municipal Courts for review and action.