The process of becoming an active Home Energy Score Assessor is now easier and more streamlined than ever before. With the release of Updated Quality Assurance and Mentoring Protocols, there are more ways to meet mentoring and quality assurance requirements. Previously, Assessors had to be available in every region to assist with mentorship and quality assurance. That restricted new Assessors to areas only where there was already an established Assessor. Now, quality assurance and mentoring requirements can be handled remotely through photo and video technology. With this change, the Home Energy Score program is fully accessible to prospective Assessors in every U.S. market.
The Home Energy Score is an asset rating that allows homeowners, buyers, and renters to compare U.S. homes in terms of estimated energy performance. Based on a standard in-home assessment of a home’s energy-related assets, the Home Energy Score Report provides information that can be included in multiple listing service systems and potentially influence home appraisals and financing.
The first change is in the mentoring requirements, which now allows candidate Assessors to receive mentorship through a video-conferencing application or software that has photo and video sharing. A Remote Mentor will access and review the content and provide feedback to the candidate. These technologies can deliver an educational experience similar to live, in-person mentorship.
To use Desktop Quality Assurance (DTQA), a DTQA Auditor reviews 20–35 photos of the home’s key features submitted by the Assessor instead of performing a second, independent, in-field assessment. The Auditor can then upload a quality assurance assessment for the home and verify that the data entered by the Assessor is comparable to the photographic evidence. New supporting materials help guide the Assessor through the process of providing the necessary images and guide the DTQA Auditor through the process of verifying the Assessor’s data inputs. These new protocols will work well with home inspectors, energy auditors, or contractors who already use photographic evidence of the home’s features as part of their business model.
These solutions are being offered on a provisional basis, meaning they may be modified or rescinded if programs are not able to maintain certain standards for implementation quality. This is not a required change; Home Energy Score Partners can continue in-person mentoring and in-field quality assurance or adopt the new DTQA and remote mentoring protocols. New requirements for Mentors and Quality Assurance Auditors are now also standardized for new in-field Mentors and in-field Quality Assurance Auditors.