Skip Navigation

The U.S. Department of Energy and the North Carolina Clean Energy Technology Center are excited to announce that a new, modernized DSIRE is under construction. The new version of DSIRE will offer significant improvements over the current version, including expanded data accessibility and an array of new tools for site users. The new DSIRE site will be available in December 2014. Staff are currently working hard on the new version of DSIRE but are also maintaining the content of the current version of DSIRE. Thank you for your continued support and patience during this transition. We hope you are as excited for December as we are!

US Department Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy
IREC North Carolina Solar Center
Home Glossary Links FAQs Contact About Twitter    Facebook


Incentives/Policies for Energy Efficiency

Printable Version
Building Energy Standards   

Last DSIRE Review: 07/29/2013
Program Overview:
State: Vermont
Incentive Type: Building Energy Code
Eligible Efficiency Technologies: Comprehensive Measures/Whole Building
Applicable Sectors: Commercial, Residential, Low-Income Residential
Residential Code:2011 Vermont Residential Building Energy Standards (RBES), based on the 2009 IECC with state specific amendments, mandatory statewide; can use REScheck to show compliance.
Commercial Code:2011 Vermont Guidelines for Energy Efficient Commercial Construction based on 2009 IECC with amendments to incorporate ASHRAE 90.1-2007 and state-specific amendments.
Code Change Cycle:Both the residential and commercial code will be updated every three years.
Web Site:
Authority 1:
21 V.S.A. § 266
Authority 2:
21 V.S.A. § 268
Authority 3:
Date Enacted:
H.B. 520

Much of the information presented in this summary is drawn from the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Building Energy Codes Program and the Building Codes Assistance Project (BCAP). For more detailed information about building energy codes, visit the DOE and BCAP websites.

The 2011 Vermont Commercial Building Energy Standards took effect on January 3, 2012. The guidelines are based on the 2009 IECC, with amendments to incorporate ASHRAE 90.1-2007 with several strengthening amendments from the 2012 IECC. The new guidelines apply to all commercial construction, including alterations, renovations, repairs, and additions.

The Vermont Residential Building Energy Standards (RBES) apply to all new homes (and additions over 500 square feet) built after July 1, 1998. The Vermont Legislature enacted RBES into law in 1997 (21 V.S.A. § 266). The RBES were revised in 2004 and 2011. The most recent update took effect on October 1, 2011. See the updated Vermont Residential Energy Code Handbook for revisions.

In June 2013, Vermont enacted a Stretch Code for residential buildings to achieve greater energy savings than the RBES. The Department of Public Service must determine what is included in the code. Once a code is adopted, municipalities will have the option of adopting the code as part of their land use bylaws.

In March 2008, Vermont enacted legislation (S.B. 209) requiring the DPS to update the state's RBES and Commercial Building Energy Standards (CBES) "promptly" after the issuance of updated standards for residential and commercial construction under the international energy conservation code (IECC). In addition, SB 209 established several statewide building efficiency goals:

  • To improve substantially the energy fitness of at least 20% of the state’s housing stock by 2017 (more than 60,000 housing units), and 25% of the state’s housing stock by 2020 (approximately 80,000 housing units);
  • To reduce annual fuel needs and fuel bills by an average of 25% in the housing units served;
  • To reduce total fossil fuel consumption across all buildings by an additional 0.5% each year, leading to a total reduction of 6% annually by 2017 and 10% annually by 2025; and
  • To save Vermont families and businesses a total of $1.5 billion on fuel bills over the lifetimes of the improvements and measures installed between 2008 and 2017.

In May 2009, Vermont passed the Vermont Energy Act of 2009 (H. 446) directing the DPS to amend RBES to comply with the 2009 edition of the IECC and to amend the CBES to ensure that design and construction comply with ANSI/ASHREA/IESNA Standard 90.1-2007 or the 2009 edition of IECC--whichever is greater.

  Barry Murphy
Public Service Department
112 State Street
Montpelier, VT 05620
Phone: (802) 828-3183
Fax: (802) 828-2342
NCSU - home
Disclaimer: The information presented on the DSIRE web site provides an unofficial overview of financial incentives and other policies. It does not constitute professional tax advice or other professional financial guidance, and it should not be used as the only source of information when making purchasing decisions, investment decisions or tax decisions, or when executing other binding agreements. Please refer to the individual contact provided below each summary to verify that a specific financial incentive or other policy applies to your project.

While the DSIRE staff strives to provide the best information possible, the DSIRE staff, the N.C. Solar Center, N.C. State University and the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. make no representations or warranties, either express or implied, concerning the accuracy, completeness, reliability or suitability of the information. The DSIRE staff, the N.C. Solar Center, N.C. State University and the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. disclaim all liability of any kind arising out of your use or misuse of the information contained or referenced on DSIRE Web pages.

Copyright 2014 - 2015 North Carolina State University, under NREL Subcontract No. XEU-0-99515-01. Permission granted only for personal or educational use, or for use by or on behalf of the U.S. government. North Carolina State University prohibits the unauthorized display, reproduction, sale, and/or distribution of all or portions of the content of the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE) without prior, written consent.