Title 24, Part 6 of the California Code of Regulations, known as the California Building Standards Code or plain old “Title 24,” governs the construction of buildings in California, including those dealing with energy efficiency standards. The standards establish a minimum level of building energy efficiency.

Title 24 has received more prominence lately due to new regulations for 2014, which are designed to reduce the energy used for lighting, heating, cooling, ventilation, and water heating in residential and commercial buildings. This latest version of Title 24 has the potential to save million gallons of water annually and reduce hundreds of thousands of tons of greenhouse gas emissions.

These updated standards are part of California’s Net Zero Energy program that will require new homes built in 2020 and thereafter to have a balanced ratio of annual energy consumption and annual production of renewable energy. This will be accomplished through a combination of energy reduction strategies, plus energy creation sources such as solar panels.

Although much of Title 24 focuses on commercial and residential new home building, there are portions that deal with home remodeling. This includes projects that involve water heating systems, space conditioning systems, lighting systems and the building envelope. The standards outlined in Title 24 run over 250 pages, and go into a fair amount of detail on what steps need to be taken in every aspect of a remodeling project in order to achieve compliance.

The upshot is that it can save a homeowner a lot of time, money and headaches to work with a general contractor who is knowledgeable about the new standards and can take the necessary steps to address them.

Our longtime focus on green building and energy sustainability, and our work in cities with fairly stringent green building codes such as Palo Alto, means that we have used a number of strategies over the years to increase energy efficiency in the homes we remodel. Not just because it’s good for the environment, but also because it can save a homeowner money in the long run.

For us, green building is not just a trend. It’s another way to integrate value in our projects. Title 24 simply puts into law many of the goals and practices we already strive to deliver. If you have questions about a home remodeling project and want to make sure that your project includes energy reduction strategies, give us a call.