National Multifamily Housing Council
Many states have started adopting the 2009 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC), which contains significant changes over the prior version—the 2006 IECC. The just-released 2012 edition, which includes even more aggressive changes and significant administrative differences, is also being vetted for adoption.
If adopted on the local level, these codes will require meaningful changes in the ways apartment buildings are designed and constructed. Depending on the geographic region and the version of the code adopted, they could also add several thousand dollars to the cost of each apartment unit.
This report, Impact of the 2009 and 2012 International Energy Conservation Code in Multifamily Buildings, offers a detailed comparison of the 2009 and 2012 IECCs compared to the 2006 edition. It breaks out these costs for a typical low-rise property and a typical high-rise property by climate zone. The research was conducted by Niles Bolton Associates, Inc., an architecture and engineering firm specializing in apartments.
It is designed to aid member firms in preparing for upcoming code requirements where the more stringent codes are adopted. It is also developed to be a tool for local apartment advocates to help local jurisdictions understand the real implications adopting these codes will have on housing costs in their localities. NMHC/NAA will be using this research as part of our federal-level advocacy efforts to oppose onerous building energy codes that are not cost-effective or technically feasible.
For more Climate Zone resources, including information about Climate Zones by county, see http://energycode.pnl.gov/EnergyCodeReqs.
In general, the IECC is moving toward a heavy emphasis on building insulation and building envelope construction. Our analysis shows there are considerable differences between compliance costs for the 2009 and 2012 codes as well as significant cost variance between low-and high-rise properties across climate zones. Notably, these cost differentials are not consistent across, or between, the code editions. Key findings of the new energy code research include:
If you have any questions about the report or new building code initiatives, please contact Ron Nickson at firstname.lastname@example.org or 202-974-2327.