Low Income Housing Tax Credits & Energy Efficiency in Georgia, 2019

Georgia’s 2019 Qualified Allocation Plan (QAP) awards points for sustainable communities and sustainable developments

 

Green Capital Needs Assessment/Physical Needs Assessment

DCA’s 2019 Rehabilitation Work Scope form, which requires a detailed construction budget with unit costs, must be included in the same tab with the PNA .The DCA Rehabilitation Work Scope must include future property marketability, durability, and energy efficiency which will add to the residential quality of life

Energy Audits/Modeling

For all rehabilitation developments, Applicants must submit an Energy Audit Report. Energy Audit Reports must identify energy conservation measures (ECM) that would result in an overall energy savings of 20% or greater over pre-retrofit levels or have a Savings to Investment Ratio (SIR) of 2.0 or greater. The Energy Audit Report must be performed on at least one unit per floor and a minimum of 15% of affordable units (duct leakage testing is not required). The energy audit must be completed by a RESNET Rater, qualified Building Performance Institute (BPI) Building Analyst, or similarly qualified professional with an equivalent energy audit certification.

Minimum Documentation:

Performance Report indicating completion of energy audit by a qualified BPI Building Analyst or equivalent professional (Rehabs only)

Third-party Building Standards

Projects must be in compliance with Georgia State Minimum Standard Energy Code (International Energy Conservation Code with Georgia State Supplements and Amendments) in effect at the time of permit issuance. Proof of compliance must be submitted prior to release of 8609s.

Developments certified under these programs successfully protect and enhance the overall health, natural environment, and quality of life of communities. The program rating systems integrate the principles of smart growth and green building into a standard for neighborhood design. The programs provide independent, third-party verification that a development's location and design meet accepted high standards for an environmentally responsible, sustainable development.

 

B. Sustainable Building Certification Applicants must obtain a sustainable building certification from one of the following entities: 1. Southface Energy Institute's and Greater Atlanta Home Builders Association’s EarthCraft House Multifamily, House, or Sustainable Preservation (or single family or renovation) certification programs, based on development type. 2. Enterprise’s Enterprise Green Communities certification program (following Enterprise Green Communities protocol under the guidance of an Enterprise Qualified TA provider). 3. US Green Building Council’s LEED for Homes certification program which includes singlefamily detached and multi-family low and mid-rise structures. 4. Home Innovation Research Lab’s (HIRL)’s National Green Building Standard, meeting Bronze level or higher for single and multifamily buildings, both new and renovation. Due to the various revision cycles for each of these programs, the project must comply with the version in effect at the time the drawings are prepared for permit review. Regardless of program requirements, all projects must meet Threshold requirements for Building Sustainability and engage in tenant and building manager education in compliance with the point requirements of the respective programs.

Performance-based Requirements and Incentives

For all rehabilitation developments, Applicants must submit an Energy Audit Report. Energy Audit Reports must identify energy conservation measures (ECM) that would result in an overall energy savings of 20% or greater over pre-retrofit levels or have a Savings to Investment Ratio (SIR) of 2.0 or greater. The Energy Audit Report must be performed on at least one unit per floor and a minimum of 15% of affordable units (duct leakage testing is not required). The energy audit must be completed by a RESNET Rater, qualified Building Performance Institute (BPI) Building Analyst, or similarly qualified professional with an equivalent energy audit certification.

Energy and Water Benchmarking / Conservation

All completed properties must achieve a minimum standard for energy efficiency and sustainable building practices. At minimum, all units at all projects must comply with all requirement in this section. (Historic properties may apply for an exemption when compliance means loss of historic character-defining features and finishes).

Measured duct and building envelope leakage

Verification by certified HERS rater of an HVAC system duct leakage rate and dwelling unit air infiltration rate that meets or exceeds the following; The duct leakage rate for all climate zones in Georgia is < 8 cfm/100 square feet; dwelling unit air infiltration rate to outdoors for all climate zones is an ACH 50 of 7. For units 1200 SF and smaller, Envelope Leakage Ratio (ELR50) of .35 CFM50 per SF of building envelope may be used in lieu of ACH50. Verification testing must follow the RESNET testing protocol and must be completed by a RESNET Rater, qualified BPI Analyst, or equivalent professional. Test reports verifying compliance with the State of Georgia Minimum Standard Energy Code, the DCA minimum duct leakage and dwelling unit air infiltration rates, and envelope leakage ratio as stated above must be submitted for all projects at either the LIHTC final certification or HOME Loan final construction draw, whichever comes first. Projects that plan to utilize Packaged Terminal Heat Pumps and/or Air Conditioners (PTAC’s) or ductless mini-splits for all units are exempt from the duct leakage requirement for all non-ducted systems.

Rehab units are required to achieve a 20% improvement over existing conditions based upon pre-rehabilitation duct leakage and air dwelling unit air filtration rates or the above specified duct and envelope leakage rates. All projects must complete pre-rehab duct leakage and dwelling air infiltration test to determine a baseline. To arrive at the pre-rehabilitation leakage rates, a sampling of units (that includes one of each unit type in its various configurations within the property) must have pre-rehabilitation duct leakage and dwelling unit air infiltration performance testing, utilizing RESNET-approved performance testing methodologies, conducted upon them prior to the rehabilitation of the property.

Adaptive Re-Use will be considered under new construction standards for this Threshold section only.

 

Bathroom fans

Comply with Energy Star specifications for sound level and minimum efficiency based on CFM size. Fans must be wired with a light and equipped with either a humidistat OR a timer that ensures that the fan operates for a minimum of 10 minutes once the light has been switched off.

 

Lighting

Install fluorescent or LED lights for at least 80% (by fixture count) of the required lighting. Required lighting includes kitchens, dining rooms, living/family rooms, bathrooms, hallways, stairways, entrances/foyers, bedrooms, garages, utility rooms, and outdoor fixtures mounted on the building.

 

Plumbing fixtures

In all units: shower heads < 2.0 gpm, bathroom faucets < 1.5 gpm, kitchen faucets < 2.0 gpm, toilets ≤ 1.28 gpf.

 

Low VOC wall and floor finishes

Maximum VOC levels of 50 grams/liter for wall and 100 grams/liter for floor finishes.

 

Water heaters

Comply with Energy Star Qualified Homes Version 3 National Program Requirements for Efficiency Factor.

 

Energy Star appliances

Appliances (refrigerators, dishwashers, laundry machines) provided by owners in units and community laundries must be Energy Star efficient.

 

Contributed By: 
National Housing Trust

Other Items of Interest