Energy audits are detailed building energy-use examinations that identify which systems are operating inefficiently. They also include a financial analysis aimed at identifying cost-effective energy efficiency measures for a building.  

  • A Guide to Energy Audits
    Understand what an energy audit is, explained by the U.S. Department of Energy, Building Technologies Program.  
     
  • Department of Energy Building Asset Score  
    Score a building’s energy efficiency and create a building energy audit report, provided by the U.S. Department of Energy.   
     
  • Energy Star Treasure Hunt
    A no-cost, team-building exercise to identify no cost and low-cost building improvements and operations to save energy.

Retrofitting is the process of making improvements or alterations to an existing building to increase the building’s energy efficiency, reduce operating costs, and improve the comfort and health of occupants. Explore the resources for examples of retrofit projects other building owners have completed. 

  • Better Building Initiative  
    Better Buildings is an initiative of the U.S. Department of Energy designed to drive leadership in energy innovation. Find solutions that help reduce costs. Search by keyword or topic and use filters to refine search results.  
     
  • Better Bricks  
    Better Bricks is a website created by the Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance to help incorporate energy efficiency into commercial buildings. The case studies provide examples of the resources and tools for commercial buildings.  

Retrofitting is the process of making improvements or alterations to an existing building to increase the building’s energy efficiency, reduce operating costs, and improve the comfort and health of occupants. 

Explore the financing options provided by state, federal, and local governments to help fund energy efficiency improvements.  

  • California Alternative Energy and Advanced Transportation Financing Authority  
    The California Alternative Energy and Advanced Transportation Financing Authority (CAEATFA) works collaboratively with public and private partners to provide financing solutions for California’s industries, explore available financial incentives for energy efficiency projects. 
     
  •   ENERGY STAR Rebate Finder  
    Find rebates on ENERGY STAR certified products by zip code.  
     
  •   Financing Companies  
    Financing companies listed by the Better Buildings Initiative that fund energy efficiency and renewable energy projects. Better Buildings is an initiative of the U.S. Department of Energy.  
     
  • Alternative Below-Market Loan Programs  
    Below-market interest rates and financing for borrowers with lower credit ratings, listed by the Better Buildings, U.S. Department of Energy.  
      
  • Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE)   
    The PACE program is a financing mechanism that enables low-cost, long-term funding for energy efficiency, renewable energy, and water conservation projects that are repaid as an assessment on the property’s tax bill. 
     
  • Energy Efficiency Incentive Programs  
    List of all financial aid programs collected by the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE) operated by the North Carolina Clean Energy Technology Center at North Carolina State University. 

Energy professionals such as engineers, auditors, and building energy consultants may help optimize efficiency improvements and streamline the project process. The CEC does not endorse any of the professionals found in the external resources below. 

Explore ways landlords and tenants can partner to make a building more energy efficient, sustainable, and result in reduced operating expenses and healthier spaces to live and work. 

  • Landlord-Tenant Energy Complete Toolkit 
    Explore the toolkit from the Landlord-Tenant Energy Partnership, an Institute for Market Transformation program, that helps building owners and tenants identify measures aimed at achieving energy efficiency savings in buildings. 
     
  • Improving Business Performance For Owners and Tenants 
    Explore resources provided by the Institute for Market Transformation to learn how to improve business performance by implementing energy efficiency measures. 
     
  • Green Lease Library 
    Explore the Institute for Market Transformation’s commercial green leasing resources to understand what green leases are, how they work, and case studies. 
     
  • Tenant Efficiency Toolkit
    Provided by Better Buildings and the U.S. Department of Energy, this toolkit outlines strategies and resources for addressing split-incentive issues through green leasing opportunities. 
     
  • Landlord and Tenant Collaboration 
    Visit the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s ENERGY STAR page to read about how landlords and tenants are collaborating to overcome barriers to high-performance buildings. 
     
  • Green Lease Guide 
    A guide for landlords and tenants developed by the Building Owners and Managers Association International (BOMA). The guide includes editable template lease documents. 
     
  • Green Leasing Toolkit 
    A Green Leasing Toolkit to help tenants and landlords reach sustainability goals within commercial buildings. This tool was developed by the City and County of San Francisco and the Business Council on Climate Change. 

Utilities, Community Choice Aggregators, and Regional Energy Networks may offer a variety of incentives, such as product rebates and financing programs to encourage investment in energy efficiency. Below is a list of incentives offered by region.

Northern California

Coastal California

Central Valley and Sierras

Southern California

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