The Victorian Government is working to improve the energy efficiency of new and existing homes. Energy efficient homes will be more comfortable, cost less to heat and cool and help reduce our greenhouse gas emissions.
Beyond 6-star Homes
Victoria is playing an active role, as part of the National Energy Productivity Plan, to improve the energy efficiency of residential buildings through amendments to the National Construction Code (NCC) from 2022. This work includes a review of the Victorian variation to the energy efficiency requirements in the NCC.
To inform this work, DELWP undertook an evaluation of the impacts of the current 6-star standard (PDF, 4.9 MB) in Victoria which provides evidence of substantial public and private benefits from the previous increase in the energy efficiency requirements for new homes (from 5 to 6 stars).
As-built Compliance Verification
DELWP has partnered with the Victorian Building Authority on the delivery of the Energy Efficiency Inspections Program. This program aims to establish robust evidence on compliance with the energy efficiency requirements of the NCC through 2500 energy efficiency audits of new homes under construction, to be completed by June 2020. These audit findings will be used to build industry capability and improve consumer confidence.
Improving the energy performance of rental properties
Renters face more challenges than home owners in managing their energy costs and achieving healthy and comfortable homes. Rental properties are often poorly performing, with fixed appliances that are expensive to run, and renters must either incur high energy costs or experience reduced comfort and health.
In 2018, DELWP commissioned market research to better understand the motivations and barriers, demand for information and decision-making processes that influence investment in energy efficiency upgrades in residential rental properties in Victoria. The research, involving surveys of renters, rental providers and property managers, is one of the most up-to-date and statistically representative surveys of the Victorian rental market in recent years. The full report can be found here.
Minimum rental standards
DELWP has provided technical and policy advice to Consumer Affairs Victoria regarding energy efficiency standards for rental homes under the proposed Residential Tenancies Regulations 2020. A Regulatory Impact Statement was released in November 2019 and closed 18 December 2019.
Under the new rental laws, rental providers will need to ensure that their rental property meets certain minimum standards. Heating was identified as the first energy efficiency related minimum standard because the vast majority of energy consumption in Victorian homes is spent on heating. A heating standard would provide a significant improvement in the circumstances of many renters.
Detailed information on the rental reforms process and proposed Regulations can be found here.
DELWP will continue to work with Consumer Affairs Victoria regarding the introduction of other energy efficiency standards to improve the comfort and affordability of Victorian rental homes.
Page last updated: 04/02/20