News and Updates

Energy Upgrade California Home Upgrade: The Facts

Friday, October 25, 2013

The recent launch of energy efficiency programs by The Energy Network, as well as changes to the structure and design of Energy Upgrade California™ Home Upgrade statewide, have caused some confusion in the Contractor community. The following facts are presented to help clarify  participation requirements for the Southern California Edison (SCE) and/or Southern California Gas Company (SoCalGas®) Energy Upgrade California Home Upgrade and Advanced Home Upgrade Programs.

Any questions regarding programs administered by The Energy Network should be addressed with The Energy Network's staff. SCE and SoCalGas Energy Upgrade California Home Upgrade Program Participation Facts:

1. Funding for Energy Upgrade California Home Upgrade in the SCE and SoCalGas service territories has never been in question. The program is part of the statewide energy efficiency plan that runs through 2020 and funding is authorized in multi-year cycles. The current program cycle runs through the end of 2014 and is fully funded. Funding for the next program cycle is expected in mid-2014

2. Any homeowner whose electric service is provided by:

  • SCE, Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) or a municipal utility company (limited areas of Pacific Gas & Electric and San Diego Gas & Electric may be eligible)and whose gas service is provided by either
  • SoCalGas or Long Beach Gas and Oil

is eligible to participate* and receive incentives.

*Solar and propane use may also be eligible; contact your account manager for specifics.  

3. All Participating Contractors must meet and maintain participation requirements as defined by SCE and/or SoCalGas in order to submit projects into Home Upgrade or Advanced Home Upgrade. This includes requirements such as maintaining appropriate insurance levels, minimum participation and maintaining an active CSLB license or HERSII certification. 

4. Active status includes submitting a minimum of two Home Upgrade and/or Advanced Home Upgrade projects every six months to SCE/SoCalGas or SoCalGas. 

5. Participating Contractor status obtained from another entity (e.g. The Energy Network or other California utilities, etc.) is not transferable without approval from Program Management. 

6. The SCE/SoCalGas programs continue to support participating contractors with dedicated Account Managers who can assist with any and all questions regarding Home Upgrade and Advanced Home Upgrade requirements, mentoring, financing, EnergyPro, marketing and general participation. Any Participating Contractor who does not know who their Account Manager is can find out by contacting info@socalenergyupgradecontractors.com

7. The Home Upgrade and Advanced Home Upgrade programs are independent of each other. Neither program is a requirement for participation in the other. 

8. In accordance with the statewide program requirements, every Home Upgrade and Advanced Home Upgrade project in California must:

  • Achieve at least 10% energy savings.  
  • Include one of the three base measures.
  • Include a minimum of three measures.
  • Complete an additional shell measure (whole building air sealing; attic insulation and air sealing; windows; wall insulation or floor insulation) if the project is claiming duct sealing and air conditioner and/or furnace replacement.

 

Please contact us if you have any questions about the facts listed above.

October 2013 Contractor Update

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Greetings to contractors and raters participating in Energy Upgrade California™ Home Upgrade in the Southern California Edison (SCE) and Southern California Gas Company (SoCalGas®) service territories. Please read below for a few quick updates, upcoming events and training opportunities. If you have any questions or need any support, please contact your account manager. Contact information is included at the bottom of this message.

General Updates and Reminders

  • Please be sure to upload the abatement certificate before submitting post-retrofit information.
  • Measurement is key! Make sure to measure your customers' homes carefully, since accurate measurements are a crucial factor in determining ventilation requirements.
  • Fireplace Testing is a Building Performance Institute (BPI) requirement. Read BPI's Clarification Guidance on Gas Fireplaces and Other Unspecified Combustion Appliances  for more information.
  • Date Stamped Photographs
    • You must submit date stamped photographs if Duct Sealing is not included in your project's scope of work.
    • Date stamped photos of all Heat Producing Devices (HPDs) with barriers/baffles installed around them prior to insulation being installed must be submitted with the post-retrofit information.
  • We have confirmed with local jurisdictions that a CSLB C-10 licensed contractor must conduct the Notice of Survey if knob and tube is present even if the wiring is not.
  • Have a C-10 review, provide service and document to the building department that it meets the exceptions as outlined in the code, or that knob and tube has been removed and permitted.
  • The HCD 1 exception in section 394.12 is to be followed. Certification from a licensed electrical contractor is needed if any knob and tube is present at all; if inactive, it should be removed from the accessible attic spaces. Customer and contractor safety is the top priority - remove any doubt about the safety and condition of the wiring by following the HCD 1 exception to the letter.
  • Matadors Community Credit Union, Mark Tsimanis (818) 993-6328 ext. 210
  • GreenSky, Jesse Davis (404) 832-4124
  • Jewish Free Loan Association, Batya Ordin (323) 761-8830 ext. 110
  • At the September Technical Training session, three lenders discussed the wide range of financing programs they offer. A collaborative, open and productive discussion followed. The discussion identified several opportunities to modify financing programs to more closely fit the needs of participating contractors. Contact information for the three lenders in attendance is presented below; feel free to contact them with any additional questions or suggestions. Thanks again to the lenders and contractors in attendance for making this a successful meeting.

Upcoming Events and Training Opportunities 

October Technical Training Session

  • October 22 - watch your inbox for details
  • BPI Continuing Education Units (CEUs) are now available for attending Technical Training sessions in person! We are hoping to be able to award BPI CEU's for field mentoring sessions and the online learning center in the near future.   

Regional Affordable Comfort Institute (ACI) Conference

  • Monday, November 18 and Tuesday, November 19 in La Jolla
  • Home Performance contractor focused
  • Great opportunity to network with local and national home performance professionals
  • Scholarships are available! Apply to ACI by October 4, or talk to your account manager about scholarships available through SCE.

Marketing Updates 

You've asked for additional marketing support to help increase awareness of Energy Upgrade California Home Upgrade. Both SCE and SoCalGas will promote Home Upgrade to customers during the coming months.

  • SCE will be running bill onserts for the entire month of November.
  • Starting in October, SoCalGas will sponsor a three-month marketing campaign to promote Home Upgrade throughout its service territory. We'll let you know the specific geographic areas we are targeting so you can focus your company's marketing efforts on these areas as well, potentially increasing sales. Marketing tactics will include:
    • Door hanger distribution
    • Direct mail
    • Pandora online radio advertisements
    • Traditional and mobile banner ads
    • Keyword search (Google AdWords)

RTS Memo 133 - Building Performance Institute Building Analyst "On Staff" vs. "On Team"

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Effective October 2, 2013, the SCE/SoCalGas and the SoCalGas-only programs formally document program requirements regarding the requirement to have a BPI Building Analyst "On Staff' or "On Team". The formal program requirement is presented below:

  • Home Upgrade - Contractors participating in Home Upgrade and are new to the program (been a participating contractor less than 4 months), can utilize the services of a BPI BA that is not an employee of their firm (referred to as "On Team") for the first four months of participation. After that period, they must have a BPI BA employed by their company (referred to as "On Staff').
  • Advanced Home Upgrade {Contractors in the Program less than 4 months)Contractors participating in Advanced Home Upgrade and are new to the program (been a participating contractor less than 4 months), can utilize the services of a BPI BA that is not an employee of their firm (referred to as "On Team") for the first four months of participation. After that period, they must have a BPI BA employed by their company (referred to as "On Staff').
  • Advanced Home Upgrade {Contractors in the Program more than 4 months) - Contractors whom have participated in Advanced Home Upgrade for more than 4 months, must have a BPI BA employed by their company (referred to as "On Staff').