One of the most frequently asked questions that we get from developers regarding energy planning and compliance is ‘what exactly do we have to do?’ While the exact process is a little too lengthy for a single article (feel free to give us a call if you want the full list), we can offer here the basic process involved with assuring energy compliance.
In this article, we will show our general recommended process to energy compliance, as well as the reasons that these steps should take place in order to mitigate all associated risks and streamline the development process.
This is the third post in our ongoing series on frequently asked questions about energy compliance in development projects throughout California. In this series, we cover the three most frequently asked questions in development projects and our answers to each. If you have found this post of use, you may want to check out the rest of this series.
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Review the construction documents
A review of energy systems is the best way to catch any potential problems with the installation of energy systems. It is in the best interest for both the budget and the schedule of the project to get a professional to review the construction documents early in the process.
There are many cases in which the systems look perfect in the plans, but when it comes time to implement them, there are certain unforeseen problems that create onsite changes with little to no oversight. This is one of the most common reasons behind costly rebuilds, so ensuring that the implementation of the systems is actually feasible is the best course to mitigate risks regarding energy systems.
Materials and practices
Once the plans are approved, the next step is to ensure that the construction materials and practices are up to code. This is the second most common reason behind costly rebuilds and halts in schedule – if the materials used in a flawless construction do not pass inspection, then that is money and time lost over a slight, albeit very common, oversight.
The best way to ensure that the construction materials and practices are up to code is to have an energy consultant take a look at the materials and train the correct construction practices depending on the project.
Before the inspection is to happen, have a professional come in and ensure that the installation and construction has been completed as planned. If the previous steps have been completed properly then this should not be an issue, but it is best to take advantage of the full extent of an energy consultant’s services.
So, in short – what a developer has to do to reach energy compliance is to:
- Understand the energy code depending on the project
- Review the construction documents to see if they meet code
- Review the construction documents to see if their implementation is feasible while retaining to code
- Ensure that the materials meet code
- Ensure that the building practices meet code
- Time inspections correctly
- Have a pre-inspection review
- Ensure that all of the paperwork is completed
Feel free to join us in our next article in this series on the costs of energy compliance in a real-estate project.