A Bethesda company that analyzes energy costs has added home buying to its portfolio, with the goal to provide buyers with the long-term hidden costs of their lighting, water heater and appliances.
Savenia Labs, a company in the Bethesda Green business incubator, last week launched its Savenia Home Ratings. The company is working with local realtor Jane Fairweather and homebuilder Sandy Spring Builders to calculate the value of energy-saving appliances, lighting and other improvements before someone buys or sells a home.
The information is based on water and electricity rates in the home’s zip code. Home sellers or builders can enter the product model numbers into Savenia’s database to see how they match up. Savenia then will provide a gold, silver or bronze home rating and details on environmental impacts and costs of proposed upgrades.
The company says upgrading lighting, appliances and a water heater up front can save tens of thousands of utility costs over 15 years.
Savenia previously partnered up with local hardware store Strosniders to attach a carbon footprint rating to appliances by incorporating how different areas produce the electricity being used to power different products.
For example: The company can take a coffee maker, gather market data such as how long people typically leave a pot of coffee on a hot plate, test the electricity output and determine that $25 product may cost a consumer $100 to use in the long run. Savenia then provides that information to retailers in the form of an energy rating label displayed on the store’s shelves.
It’s something Savenia founder John Jabara says consumers are paying closer attention to, which could attract them to sellers or home builders who are willing to make energy-saving adjustments.
“Now, buyers can make more informed buying decisions and sellers can finally get credit for investments in efficient products,” Jabara said in a press release.