Per BIAW, one builder of already energy-efficient homes calculated just complying with the new energy code effective earlier this could add up to $10,364 to the cost of a new home depending on the size of the home. Complying with the other new codes (residential building, plumbing, fire, and mechanical codes, as well as the Washington state amendments that affect them) adds even more for a combined average of $15,000 to $20,000. Here are some examples from the energy code:
- Upgrading the HVAC system with compliant air handlers and heat pumps adds roughly $3,200 to $5,900.
- Increased cost for compliant windows adds another $480 to $1,800 to that.
- Increased cost for insulation adds $300 to $2,050 more.
The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) has recently released their annual affordability index. According to their data, a $1,000 increase in the cost of a median-priced, newly built home in Tacoma prices out 1,557 families from being able to buy in our market. Furthermore, the NAHB study finds that the median price of a home in the Seattle, Tacoma, and Bellevue area is $542,762 which makes our market the most expensive area to live in the state.