ENERGY STAR® questions and answers

It's not just for
appliances anymore

Illustration of an energystar home shining

It's not just for appliances anymore

It's not just for appliances anymore

Illustration of an energystar home shining

It's not just for appliances anymore

Now ENERGY STAR is for the whole home. Built to meet requirements set by Natural Resources Canada (NRCan), ENERGY STAR certified new homes set a higher standard for energy efficiency.

What is an ENERGY STAR home?

To earn the ENERGY STAR label, a home must meet guidelines for energy efficiency set by Natural Resources Canada (NRCan). These homes are on average 20 per cent more energy efficient than homes built to the current building code. Choosing an ENERGY STAR certified home can save you money, improve the quality and comfort of your home, and protect the environment.

See what goes into an ENERGY STAR home

What kind of homes can earn the ENERGY STAR label?

Several classifications of homes are eligible:

  • Any single-family home,
  • Any unit in a multifamily building with 4 units or fewer
  • Any unit in a multifamily building with 3 stories or less in height

These may include:

  • Traditional site-constructed homes
  • Log homes
  • Modular homes
  • System-built homes (e.g. insulated concrete forms, structurally insulated panels)
  • Housing and Urban Development (HUD) code manufactured homes.

There are no size restrictions for ENERGY STAR homes—homes of ny size can earn the label.

Do ENERGY STAR homes look different?

No, most of the features that make a home energy efficient are ‘behind the walls’ – things like sealed ducts, improved insulation and high-performance windows. But while you may not be able to see the differences with your eyes, you’ll certainly feel it with greater comfort and lower utility bills.

How do I know if a home is really ENERGY STAR certified?

Look for a blue ENERGY STAR label on your electrical panel or elsewhere in your utility room. If you don’t see one, contact your builder and ask them for documentation that your home has earned the ENERGY STAR certification.

Why should I buy an ENERGY STAR home?

An ENERGY STAR home is an investment that pays off now and in the future. You get savings on your monthly energy bills, better air quality and greater comfort now, and increased resale value and peace of mind for the future. And don’t forget: ENERGY STAR homes are better for the planet, with lower energy usage and fewer greenhouse gas emissions.

Does an ENERGY STAR home cost more?

An ENERGY STAR certified home may have a higher initial cost than a comparable home without the energy efficient features. However, you’ll pay less in utility bills each month, which may offset any increase in your mortgage payment.

Some builders offer ENERGY STAR homes standard, with no additional markup.

I may be using less energy to heat and cool my home, but will I be comfortable?

ENERGY STAR homes don’t just use less energy, they put that energy to good use. Thanks to features like better insulation, efficient heating and cooling systems and high-performance ENERGY STAR windows, many ENERGY STAR homeowners say their current homes are much more comfortable than their previous homes.

illustration of a builder.

Are you a home builder?

More than ever before, new home buyers want efficiency. Learn how staying ahead of the curve can help you build your business.

Get ENERGY STAR info and resources for builders


The ENERGY STAR name and symbol are registered trademarks of the United States Environmental Protection Agency and are used in Canada with permission.