When does the SmartRegs Inspection have to occur?
All rental properties in the City of Boulder must pass a SmartRegs Inspection before the end of 2018. If your rental does not pass an inspection before the end of 2018, you will not be able to receive or renew a rental license at the start of 2019 and beyond.
Does my duplex need just one SmartRegs Inspection?
No. A duplex is two rental units, so each unit must have its own SmartRegs Inspection. A SmartRegs Inspection must be done for each unit or home that has a rental license.
Does my rental need a SmartRegs Inspection if it had a Home Energy Rating System evaluation done?
Properties that have a HERS Rating of 120 or less do not need a SmartRegs Inspection, but must submit an application with HERS Rating attached to be considered compliant and receive a certificate of compliance from the City of Boulder.
I have already had an energy audit, so do I still have to have a SmartRegs Inspection?
Yes. An energy audit can't be used as a substitute SmartRegs Inspection unless it resulted in a HERS index of 120 or lower. Energy audits are done by independent auditors while SmartRegs Inspections are done by Inspectors that have been trained and certified by the City of Boulder. The protocol is similar to other rental inspections that occur.
Do I have to go through EnergySmart with respect to having a SmartRegs Inspection done?
No. There are SmartRegs Inspectors working independently of EnergySmart, and they can be hired to perform the Inspection. You can find the list of G-licensed Inspectors at www.bouldercolorado.gov/smartregs.
These Inspectors set their own rates and you must coordinate directly with these Inspectors. EnergySmart can only assist with coordination for those SmartRegs Inspectors who have agreed to partner with EnergySmart.
If I decide to use a SmartRegs Inspector who is not partnering with EnergySmart, can I still receive the free EnergySmart Advising?
Yes. The Advisor could either attend the inspection and then provide follow-up, or just provide follow-up in order to review the results and assist with contractors, rebates and so on.
SmartRegs and EnergySmart
How much does the SmartRegs Inspection cost?
The SmartRegs Inspectors - partnering with EnergySmart - have agreed to charge $120 per rental inspection. Inspectors not partnering with EnergySmart have set their own rates. The EnergySmart Advisors are provided free of cost. Any promotional EnergySmart enrollment discounts would also be applied to SmartRegs inspection costs; call 303-544-1000 to find out about any current offers!
What information do I need to provide for EnergySmart enrollment?
The enrollment process requires your contact information and some basic details about your rental such as year built, number of bedrooms and utility information. In order to enroll your rental(s), electric and gas utility account numbers must be provided.
There is a Utility Release Form that must be signed by the person whose name appears on the utility bills. If a tenant receives the utility bills, then the tenant must complete the form. The utility account information is used to track energy usage history for homes in Boulder County. The data used is strictly energy usage. No personal information associated with your utility account is obtained during the process.
Scheduling is the final step of enrollment. Depending on the size and configuration of the rental, inspections usually last about two hours.
What do my tenants need to do?
If a tenant's name appears on the utility bills for the rental, then that tenant will have to complete a Utility Release Form if a landlord has enrolled for free EnergySmart Advising.
A blower door test is conducted during the SmartRegs Inspection. No person can enter or exit the rental while the test is being conducted. All doors and windows must remain shut during the test.
The SmartRegs Inspector must be able to move freely around the rental. Inspectors will need to access mechanical rooms in order to evaluate the furnace, hot water heater, etc.
Crawl spaces and attics will also need to be accessed. Therefore, tenants should not have items obstructing any of these access points. Any type of wood fireplace or wood stove must also have its ashes completely cleaned out. No fire or significant heat is allowed during the SmartRegs Inspection.
Can a Rental License Inspection and SmartRegs Inspection occur simultaneously?
Yes. Some inspectors do both SmartRegs Inspections and the Baseline and Renewal Inspections. The Inspectors partnering with EnergySmart will do a SmartRegs Inspection for $120. The fee for other Rental License Inspections depends on the individual Inspector. EnergySmart does not set that fee for the inspectors, but we can assist in finding out what an individual inspector charges for a Rental License Inspection.
Can I choose a specific SmartRegs Inspector to work with?
Yes. If you wish to work with a specific SmartRegs Inspector, you will be limited with respect to scheduling. Simply inform the Project Administrator when you call to schedule your inspection.
Who will be attending the SmartRegs Inspection?
If enrolled in EnergySmart, there will be two people attending the inspection. The SmartRegs Inspector will perform a technical analysis of the rental. The EnergySmart Advisor will be present to answer general energy efficiency questions and provide some free quick-install items.
How can I reach my EnergySmart Advisor?
You can email your advisor. If you wish to speak with your advisor, you can contact a Project Administrator who will transfer the call if the advisor is available. The advisors are also conducting assessments throughout the day, so they will not always be available to take the call.
Can a SmartRegs Inspection be done under any conditions?
No. A SmartRegs Inspection cannot be done if the rental is undergoing retrofits or construction. A SmartRegs Inspector should be consulted to determine whether or not an improvement project poses an obstacle. Wood-burning fireplaces or stoves must be cleaned of all ashes before the assessment occurs. A fireplace or wood stove should be at a cool state during an assessment.
Am I obligated to make upgrades to the rental after the inspection?
If your rental does not pass the inspection, then upgrades will be required so that the rental passes a follow-up inspection. The free EnergySmart Advisor is provided to assist you with upgrade decisions and contractor selection once you are ready to pursue the recommended upgrades.
Do I have to make all of the upgrades if the rental does not pass an inspection?
Not necessarily. Enough upgrades have to be made so that you reach 100 points during the next inspection. For example, if the rental scores 80 initially, then you must complete enough upgrades to receive 20 more points. A free EnergySmart Advisor can assist you with figuring out which upgrades to make so its as cost-effective as possible.
How do I know that the contractor I hire is qualified?
The contractors partnering with EnergySmart go through an application process with Boulder County. Although we are not responsible for the work done by any individual contractor, we do perform quality assurance evaluations in order to verify that the contractors are meeting the standards that Boulder County has set for them.
What happens if my rental passes a SmartRegs Inspection?
If your rental passes a SmartRegs Inspection, the inspector will submit paperwork to the City of Boulder showing that the rental is SmartRegs compliant. No upgrades will need to be made. The inspector may choose to provide you with a list of recommendations that you can choose to follow through with, if you wish.
Are there other rebates available in addition to the SmartRegs and EnergySmart rebates?
Yes. There are typically rebates available through Xcel Energy in addition to Federal tax credits. EnergySmart Advisors can assist with determining the applicable rebates for upgrades you may be interested in pursuing.
I recently installed a new furnace, and my SmartRegs Inspection is tomorrow. Can I receive a SmartRegs or EnergySmart rebate for the furnace?
No. SmartRegs and EnergySmart rebates cannot be used retroactively for upgrades completed prior to the SmartRegs Inspection.
I know SmartRegs is mandatory, but I am not sure that I can afford it, so what can I do?
If tenants meet low-income standards, you can take advantage of a program provided by Longs Peak Energy Conservation that provides free weatherization for households that fall under specific income levels. An EnergySmart Project Administrator can direct you to the Longs Peak website, where you can find information about the program and download an application for your tenants. Any rental that receives weatherization through Longs Peak is considered SmartRegs compliant.
Do newly-constructed rentals need to comply with SmartRegs energy efficiency requirements?
Buildings that can be verified as meeting or exceeding the energy efficiency requirements of the Energy Conservation and Insulation Code, Chapter 10-7, BRC 1981 will be considered compliant. These are typically homes built in Boulder after July 2001. An application must still be submitted, noting the construction date. City staff will verify compliance and issue a certificate of compliance, if approved.
Does a basement apartment in my house need a SmartRegs Inspection?
Accessory Dwelling Units (ADU) or attached Owner Accessory Units (OAU) do not need a SmartRegs Inspection. An ADU or attached OAU is generally considered any rental unit that is physically attached to the unit that the owner occupies. The rental license should specify whether the rental is an ADU, which can be verified by the City of Boulder.
What about on-campus housing?
Dorms do not typically hold a rental license, which would mean they do not have to comply.
Do mobile homes need SmartRegs Inspections?
Mobile homes are inspected by the State of Colorado and therefore do not need a SmartRegs Inspection. To verify compliance by way of this exception, an application must still be submitted with the appropriate exception box checked. City staff will verify compliance and issue a certificate of compliance if approved.
The rental property I own is very old; does it still need a SmartRegs Inspection?
Yes. All rental properties must pass a SmartRegs Inspection. If a rental cannot be upgraded in any way because of its age or structural details, then a SmartRegs Inspector can designate the rental as "Technically Impractical" with respect to making upgrades. The City of Boulder will review the inspector's findings and approve these exceptions on a case-by-case basis. Landlords are required to purchase carbon offsets in lieu of any checklist points they are unable to claim due to technical impracticality.
Last Updated on Friday, 22 February 2013 10:37