01 December 2009

Myth debunked: Cap and trade does NOT require retrofits

According to Snopes.com, the famed Internet rumor fact-check site, e-mail gossip has it that "the 'Cap and Trade energy bill' requires that all existing real estate must meet new energy standards before it can be sold." And Snopes answers that rumor today with an emphatic "FALSE."
HR 2454 contains no provisions requiring that existing homes "must meet the new energy standards" before they can be re-sold. Likewise, the bill includes no requirements that an existing residential property undergo an energy usage-related audit or inspection and be assigned a "certificate of efficiency issued by a federal building efficiency inspector" before it can be re-sold or rented.

... the bill merely provides for federal funding to be offered as incentives for owners of existing properties to voluntarily improve the energy efficiency of their structures.

Now, all of this is good news for home improvement retailers. For one, even if the cap-and-trade aspect of the legislation is defeated in the Senate, laws requiring efficiency in new construction are still likely to reappear. And for another, the provisions encouraging retrofits -- but not requiring them -- will bring in new business, without alienating those who think the government is forcing action.

But first, your job is to educate your customers, so they won't believe every wild thing they read in their in-boxes.

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