RESNET HERS Rater Certification

RESNET HERS Rater Terms & Acronyms

If you're interested in pursuing RESNET HERS Rater Certification, check out our handy glossary so that you understand all the necessary terms during your research.

RESNET HERS Rater Terms & Acronyms

If you’re new to the home performance industry, you might consider earning a RESNET HERS Rater Certification to demonstrate your knowledge of energy-efficient new homes.

RESNET HERS Raters are essentially home energy auditors, who perform a series of diagnostic tests to identify energy-saving opportunities in homes. This distinction not only highlights your knowledge of air infiltration and energy loss using blower door and duct leakage testing, but can also qualify you to work on energy-efficent homes seeking ENERGY STAR Certification.

Let’s take a moment to strip away the complications and get a base understanding of what role RESNET Certification plays in the home energy efficiency industry and what all the associated terms represent.

The Certification Program & Process

RESNET = Residential Energy Services Network

  • created home energy efficiency standards

HERS = Home Energy Rating System

  • a range of numbers from 0-100
  • the numbers are used to represent the energy efficiency of a home
  • 100 represents the energy use of a standard home
  • 0 represents a home that uses no net purchased energy
  • the lower the number, the better
  • the HERS Index visually shows this range so you can compare two homes

Home Energy Rating = a score (based on the HERS Index)

  • computer software generates this number based on submitted home criteria
  • represents the energy use of a particular home
  • generally applies to new home construction or major remodeling
  • may qualify a home for the ENERGY STAR Homes Designation
  • is a target for builders who want to meet state energy code

Home Energy Audit = an internal and external inspection of a home

  • auditor performs a series of diagnostic tests on the home’s systems
  • includes blower door and duct leakage testing, indoor air quality, and combustion safety
  • auditor offers a prioritized list of improvements and projected cost/benefits to client

RESNET HERS Rater explained graphic


The People / Professional Titles

Rater Candidate = person who has passed the RESNET Core Rater Exam, CAZ Written & Simulation Exams, and Practical Simulation Exam

  • not yet certified

Certified Rater = person who has completed 5 approved field ratings and passed all exams within one year

  • all certified Raters must work through an approved Quality Assurance Provider

Quality Assurance (QA) Provider = a third party business that provides on-going support to Raters

  • assists Rater Candidates with earning the required field ratings
  • approves the field ratings and ultimately certifies the Rater Candidate
  • ensures Rater’s on-going compliance with RESNET standards
  • checks 10% of a Rater’s energy modeling files
  • performs an on-site QA review of 1% of a Rater’s rated homes each year
  • reports results of all rating and on-site QA activity to RESNET annually
  • maintains an accurate database of a Rater’s energy modeling files

Quality Assurance Designee (QAD) = person responsible for quality assurance within a QA Provider organization

  • is a certified HERS Rater
  • has passed the QAD exam
  • has met the requirements of section 905 in the RESNET standards

For more information on this career path, visit our RESNET HERS Rater Certification page.

About Lesley Baulding

Lesley has been passionately advocating for and working with green building and renewable energy since 2009. She has experience with LEED certification, home energy auditing, blower door testing, solar energy, and more. She holds many certifications, including LEED Green Associate and NABCEP Certification. Her work has won numerous awards over the past decade.