Sustainable Living

Shine a light on inefficient homes

People selling or renting out a home are not required to provide information about energy performance. Through conversations with house hunters and real estate agents, we can ensure energy performance is a key consideration when buying or renting a home.

What’s the energy rating of your home? Have you ever tried to get this information but found it challenging? In Victoria, people selling or renting out a home are not required to provide this information to home buyers or renters, making it hard to know just how much energy you need to consume to stay comfortable.

A lot of people don’t know how much they can benefit from better energy performance so house hunters rarely ask for this information. This means the real estate industry hasn’t felt the need to offer people these resources.

The end result is that people buy and rent homes with no idea about the home’s running costs, comfort or livability until they move in. Read the experiences of people living in homes with oppressive conditions here.

Open-for-inspections are a critical point in the process of buying or renting a home. This is when people are making the incredibly important life decision of what kind home they want to live in. We consider many factors, including location, transport, schools, shops and house size.

Given how much public concern there is around energy bills, we think house hunters should be able to easily access information about energy performance before they choose a home.

That’s why we will be running a series of volunteer-led surveys at open-for-inspections with house hunters and real estate agents from February 2020.

get involved

Interested in surveying at open-for-inspections? Email James Conlan for a detailed instructions manual at

We will survey house hunters and give them accessible information about the benefits of small efficiency upgrades that produce massive savings in both emissions and money. This will encourage them to consider energy performance during the process of deciding which home they will buy or rent. This will also prompt house hunters to start requesting this information from estate agents, who will subsequently need to start considering the importance of this issue.

We’re aiming to equip people with an understanding of the benefits and relevance of energy performance ratings to their daily life. By starting this conversation, real estate agents will begin to understand that providing this information is a key part of being successful in their job. This could be the beginning of a bottom-up, consumer-driven conversation about the importance of energy performance in our built environment.