• The city has building codes that are more stringent than statewide standards
  • San Francisco has significantly reduced its greenhouse gas emissions since 1990
  • The city gives organizations and individuals free trees as part of an ongoing plan

San Francisco is the among the top five most energy efficiency cities in the nation, and homebuyers don’t take wasted energy here lightly.

The city ranks as the fourth most energy efficient market in the nation primarily because of its energy and water utilities policies, community wide initiatives and building policies. This according to a report from the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy, which gave San Francisco an energy efficiency score of 75.5 out of a possible 100 points.

When it comes to energy and water utilities, the city partners offers various upgrade, incentive, technical service, and quality control programs to single-family residential properties via a partnership with its utility provider Pacific Gas & Electric.

The city is also a partner in the ratepayer-funded $26 million Bay Area Regional Energy Network program, which offers home upgrades, rebates and performance-based incentives for multifamily retrofits.

glebchik / Shutterstock.com

glebchik / Shutterstock.com

On the regional level, the city plays a leadership role in the Bay Area Regional Energy Network and is active in the Bay Area Climate Collaborative. On the state level, San Francisco is a founding member of Green Cities California and helped form the Local Government Sustainable Energy Coalition.

Community-wide, the city has a goal to increase the number of street trees by 50,000 spanning the next 20 years by planting 2,500 trees per year. The trees are free from the city.

Additionally, San Francisco is on track to meet or exceed its 2017 community-wide greenhouse gas goal, which is to reduce emissions by 25 percent when compared to 1990 levels.

The city’s building codes are stringent and require all new residential building to be 10 percent more efficient than CA Title-24. Under its energy conservation ordinance, a minimum set of retrofits must be made to residential properties built before 1978 at the time-of-sale.

Energy efficiency is of importance to homebuyers in the city, as the region’s MLS, SFARMLS, has an energy efficiency search field for listed homes.

Email Erik Pisor

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