Frequently Asked Questions

Frequent Customer Questions – Portland Home Energy Scores – Home Measurement Floor Plans

  • Our measurers and home energy assessors do not carry MLS keys.  We will need a lock box code or other instructions if someone will not be there to meet us.  There is a field for access instructions to fill out when ordering.

  • Our floor plans with interior walls are detailed.  Most homes under 4,000 square feet take under two hours, but larger or more complicated homes (particularly if there are many curves or angles in home) can take much longer.  It is not uncommon for a 4,500 square foot home to take three or more hours.  A 6,500 square foot home can take four or five hours, but it all depends on the complexity.  If you’re a real estate agent, please warn the homeowner or anyone waiting on us that we could be at the property for an extended period.  Quality work takes time and we appreciate your patience.

  • Our process of measurement involves measuring around the exterior of the house (or building) first.  Then we move to the inside and start drawing interior walls.  We might spend more time on an upper level if we could not measure it from outside.  We need to look in every room and closet to make a complete drawing, so please be prepared.  Do not worry about clutter, dirt, or construction.  We can usually shoot our laser measurement tools over or past most obstacles.  

  • Our Standard Floor Plan includes typical sheds, decks, and patios.  We do not draw walks or irregular “naturalscapes”.  Please view examples on home page.

  • Your sketch is usually delivered by email late in the evening the same day as the measurement.  If you need changes to room names or anything else, just let us know and we will usually get that within 24 hours.  If you’re in a time crunch, let us know, we might be able to help expedite your order.  You can also check a box to be on the wait list when ordering.

  • You will receive a secure invoice and payment link from Intuit QuickBooks once the measurement or Home Energy Score is completed (usually late in the evening).  It is your choice if you want to pay online using a credit card or mail a check.

  • The prices for our measurements and Home Energy Score services are based on the total of Main + Upper + Lower measured.  This includes finished and unfinished basement and accessory units, but it does not include garages (unless commercial), patios, decks, or small sheds.  We’re happy to measure those items at no extra charge for the majority of properties, but large or complex outbuildings, decks, or patios may require additional charge.  We also charge for drive time/distance to some outlying areas.  If you’re unsure, just ask or try going through the ordering process without finalizing the order or contact us.

  • Appointments can be canceled or changed easily online up to 24 hours prior to the appointment at no cost.  After 24 hours a cancellation charge of $50 may be applied due to our employee having an open spot.  If notification of cancellation is not made prior to arrival at the property, the trip fee is $75.

  • Our process for the Portland Home Energy Score first involves measuring around the exterior of the house (or building) first.  Then we move to the inside and start drawing interior walls if you also ordered a floor plan.  If not, we will be moving through the home and looking at the furnace, hot water heater, windows, attic, and crawlspace to gather inputs for the Department of Energy modeling software.  We might spend more time on an upper level if we could not measure it from outside or if there are sloped ceilings.  We need to look in every room to complete the assessment, so please be prepared.  Do not worry about clutter, dirt, or construction, but please let us know in advance if the attic access is over ten feet off the ground or if the attic or crawlspace are otherwise not accessible.  

  • Portland Home Energy Scores take about the same amount of time on site as a home measurement floor plan (see above How long will it take to measure?).  That is because a big part of the Home Energy Score process is measuring the volume of air in the house and measuring the area of windows.  Most homes can be done easily by one person in about an hour and a half.  However, homes with complex shapes and/or many vaulted or cathedral ceilings that are difficult to measure can take much longer.  Also homes that have multiple attic spaces, crawlspaces, or heating systems take significantly more time.

  • You should get a Home Energy Score if you live in the City of Portland and plan to list your home (see City Ordinance) for sale in the next eight years or you want to start making energy efficient upgrades to your home but you don’t know where to start.  A Quality Measurement is a good source because we can provide the score, provide you with a list of practical energy improvements that will payback within ten years or less, and we are not interested in selling you anything but customer service.

  • Our clients have many uses and reasons for ordering our services.  In general, if you’re listing your home for sale or rent, a floor plan helps your real estate agent gather key information about your home including square footage, room dimensions, from an independent source and a displays it all in a way that helps your agent and prospective buyers understand the home layout.

  • If your home is a foreclosure sale, a trustee’s sale, a deed-in-lieu of foreclosure, or a pre-foreclosure sale your home may be exempt from obtaining a Home Energy Score in Portland.  You may also apply for an exemption if compliance would cause undue hardship for the seller.  If you’re a new home builder using other scoring systems like EPS or HERS you too may be exempt.  Verify with the City of Portland because policies are always subject to change.  Click this link for more information and to apply for an exemption.

  • Do not worry if your home receives a below average Home Energy Score.  That does not mean that your home is less attractive and it does not mean that your home will sell for less money.  A good analogy for the Portland Home Energy Scores is cars and the Miles Per Gallon (MPG) rating.  Cars with a below average MPG, might also be very high quality and sell for a lot of money.  Just think of a big luxury SUV versus a compact economy car.  In this example, the SUV will likely sell for much more money than the economy car, despite the MPG rating on the window.  Just like with MPG, size has the biggest influence on the Home Energy Score and how much energy your home uses.  However, if your home is more than a couple years old, your Home Energy Score will provide a list of things you can do that will improve your score and payback in ten years or less.

  • Home Energy Scores in Portland are assessments and not audits.  Audits are much more complicated and expensive.  The City of Portland Home Energy Score is a low cost alternative to an audit.  Here is a link to a video that explains.

  • Here is a short video to show you how.

  • The Home Energy Score is something that we do not estimate.  We input factors into the software and the score is generated by the computer.  The utilities that it estimates are based on actual local utility costs, but average occupancy behavior and weather.  For example, one owner might set the thermostat high and another might not.  The good thing about the score is that although it might not be accurate for one owner behavior or one particular year, it is something that is consistently applied to all properties for the sake of reasonable comparison.  You cannot compare the utilities of one owner to another, but you can compare the Home Energy Score from one home to another.

  • Yes.  Just let us know your concern and we will check to make sure all information is accurate.  If a mistake was made or there is something the assessor was not aware of, it can easily be edited.  If you made an energy update to your home, we can update the score, sometimes without a return visit.