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The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced the adoption of the updated Minimum Energy Standards for new single and multifamily homes.

All multifamily developments will have to comply with the 2021 IECC standards by May 28, 2025 — 12 months after the rule effective date of May 28, 2024.

In addition, the rule provides other compliance paths. Homes built to above-code existing standards will satisfy the new requirement. Programs specifically mentioned by HUD include ICC-700 National Green Building Standard (NGBS), Energy Star Certified New Homes, and Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), among others.

Adoption of the prescriptive or performance paths of the 2024 IECC will also be an allowable compliance pathway.

The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) released a statement railing against the adoption of the rule, citing the significant additional costs to develop both single-family and multifamily properties. While homeowners will shoulder the increase when buying a home — a cost NAHB estimates to be more than $31,000 to the cost of building a new home — for affordable housing providers those additional costs will instead fall to developers without the ability to recoup the costs through rental rents, likely leading to fewer units built. See NAHB’s statement here.