What is an energy efficiency assessment for your home?

racv trades checking oven


Posted April 30, 2024

A home energy efficiency assessment is valuable for anyone looking to reduce their energy bills. 
A Home Energy Efficiency Assessment is a comprehensive evaluation completed by a qualified professional to determine how effectively a property uses energy. 

Kate Ross, Senior Manager Home Energy Development RACV, says undertaking an assessment can be valuable for "optimising energy use, reducing costs, improving comfort and minimising environmental impact”.

This process identifies areas where energy is being wasted in the home, and provides tailored recommendations for improvements in reducing energy bills, where to stop wasting energy, and how to become more efficient.

RACV Members save more on Home Energy Efficiency Assessments with Arcline by RACV

Making your home more energy efficient | RACV

Home energy efficiency and how it's assessed

What is home energy efficiency? 

Looking into your household’s ‘energy efficiency’ is evaluating how the home can provide the same functions, such as lighting or hot water, while using less energy. 

An energy-efficient home consumes less energy for areas like heating, cooling, appliances, and electronics, which can lead to lower utility bills overall. 

What happens during a Home Energy Efficiency Assessment?

A Home Energy Efficiency Assessment is an on-site examination of your home's energy usage. 

Home Energy Efficiency Assessments typically involve a thorough inspection of a property’s energy use. Qualified professionals use specialised tools and software to measure energy consumption, to then identify opportunities for saving. 

“Anyone looking to improve the energy efficiency of their home and reduce energy costs should consider booking a home energy assessment,” says Ross.

With Arcline by RACV, a Home Energy Efficiency Assessor conducts the assessment and provides you with a customised report. This assessment helps you to pinpoint areas where improvements can be made to decrease energy consumption and save on overall costs.

What areas are investigated during the assessment?

The assessor evaluates areas like heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems, lighting, insulation, appliances, and other energy-consuming devices. With Arcline by RACV, your assessor will evaluate: 

  • Heating, cooling, and cooking appliances

  • Insulation and thermal efficiency of your home

  • Opportunity for solar panels / home batteries

  • Window frames and glass (double or single glazed, low emissivity)

  • Type of hot water system / heat pump

  • Lighting 

  • Water usage (dual / single flush toilets, low-flow shower heads, rainwater tanks)

  • Pool or spa


solar panels  on roof

Switching to solar is one way to be more energy efficient, along with switching from gas to electricity. Image: Getty

Benefits of a Home Energy Efficiency Assessment

What information is provided in the Home Energy Efficiency Assessment?

Once the assessment is complete, a personalised home energy efficiency report is provided. 

While there is no obligation to action the report, it will include your home’s energy efficiency score in comparison with similar properties, and offer actionable recommendations like upgrading insulation, replacing inefficient appliances, getting solar power or improving lighting systems.

The report will outline how much you could save, as well as associated costs with any recommendations to changes in home structure or energy. 

Cost and energy savings and improved comfort

Ross notes that there are many advantages to conducting a home energy efficiency assessment: 

  • Cost and energy savings: By identifying and addressing where energy is being wasted in your home, you can reduce your energy consumption and lower your energy bills.

  • Improved comfort: An assessment may identify where your home has a draught or poor insulation. Fixing this could lead to a more comfortable living environment.

  • Potential increased home value: Energy efficient homes are often more attractive to potential buyers and could increase the overall value of your home.

  • Environmental impact: Reducing energy consumption helps decrease your home’s carbon footprint. 

What to look for in an energy efficiency assessment provider

Your property is unique, so make sure the provider has a personalised approach, and that the solutions offered are tailored to meet your specific needs and goals.

Get your provider to help you understand how to achieve greater energy efficiency. They should be able to guide you through the entire process, from identifying opportunities to executing improvements. 

Make sure they are qualified professionals who use accurate measurements and detailed analysis during the assessment. This allows them to provide precise recommendations for maximum efficiency.


testing energy efficency of washing machine

Most of the energy used to wash clothes is heating the water, so more cold washes is one way to cut costs. Image: Getty

What to do to improve energy efficiency in the home 

While needs will vary depending on your individual circumstances, Ross says a good rule of thumb is to re-assess when any major changes are being made to your living situation, such as “buying or selling a home; considering major renovations, or you see a significant increase in utility bills.”

What to do to improve energy efficiency in the home 

There are common areas where people tend to waste energy and money. To improve your energy usage in the home, some of Ross' suggestions include:  

  • Get smart – technology doesn’t just make our lives easier; it can help save on energy bills, too. Consider smart home devices that could save you money. 

  • Regular services and maintenance checks – Inefficient or outdated heating and cooling systems, [or] insufficient or improperly installed insulation” are common energy guzzlers, says Ross. Get regular services for your air conditioner and heater, and assess if there are more efficient ways to heat or cool your home.