There are 26 million apartments in the U.S. that house nine million families below the poverty level, and four million elderly households.  The percentage of multifamily (MF) homes in states with large urban centers is 26% or more of the residential housing stock.  Nehemiah Stone, Home Energy author and energy consultant at the Benningfield Group, prepared the attached report, "U.S. Multifamily Energy Efficiency Potential by 2020", to help national and regional policymakers understand the energy efficiency potential in the country’s existing MF sector.  Writing in the May/June 2010 issue of Home Energy, Nehemiah states:

"When we talk about possible energy efficiency improvements in the residential sector, we seldom think of opportunities outside of single-family (SF) homes, and we almost never consider technologies that are appropriate only for MF homes. In fact, almost every study of the potential for energy efficiency in the existing residential sector either excludes MF buildings or includes them as a nonspecific part of the aggregate residential sector."

What unique characteristics have you found in MF buildings and which technologies have you used that are appropriate for MF homes?


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All or our experience has just gone to prove how little discussion there is about savings in the multi-family sector. The reason we most frequently hear is that the energy savings is so much smaller for MF unit owner, that they don't see the value in even having their homes tested for air leakage. Many strata corps also have rules that would limit the ability of one home owner to change/upgrade their windows (for instance), unless everyone else did as well. So there are limits to what any one family can do. And many building managers don't see the value, either because the believe they're recovering the costs from their tenants, or they don't see it as being worth their time and money.

It's a shame really. There's so much waste in most MF buildings, and the residents could be much more comfortable in their homes.

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