BEopt: Building Energy Optimization Tool

The BEopt™ (Building Energy Optimization Tool) software provides capabilities to evaluate residential building designs and identify cost-optimal efficiency packages at various levels of whole-house energy savings along the path to zero net energy.

BEopt can be used to analyze both new construction and existing home retrofits, as well as single-family detached and multi-family buildings, through evaluation of single building designs, parametric sweeps, and cost-based optimizations.

BEopt provides detailed simulation-based analysis based on specific house characteristics, such as size, architecture, occupancy, vintage, location, and utility rates. Discrete envelope and equipment options, reflecting realistic construction materials and practices, are evaluated.

BEopt uses EnergyPlus, the Department of Energy's flagship simulation engine. Simulation assumptions are based on the Building America Housing Simulation Protocols.

The sequential search optimization technique used by BEopt:

  • Finds minimum-cost building designs at different target energy-savings levels
  • Identifies multiple near-optimal designs along the path, allowing for equivalent solutions based on builder or contractor preference.


The latest release of BEopt is Version (Jan. 4, 2018). Download the BEopt setup file.

At this time, BEopt is available only for Windows. Mac users have successfully used BEopt through a virtual machine or by using a Windows workstation on the cloud.

An older version is also available for download: BEopt setup file (Nov. 7, 2016).

See the Changelog for a detailed list of changes.


Unmet Hours is an externally hosted forum that serves as a question-and-answer website for the building energy modeling community.

When posting a new question, consider adding the "beopt" tag to your post.


Energy Efficiency Potential in the U.S. Single-Family Housing Stock, NREL Technical Report (2017)

Zero Energy Ready Home Multifamily Case Study Analysis, NREL Technical Report (2016)

Public Housing: A Tailored Approach to Energy Retrofits, NREL Technical Report (2016)

Using BEopt (EnergyPlus) With Energy Audits and Surveys To Predict Actual Residential Energy UsageScience Direct (2015)

Kaupuni Village: A closer look at the first net-zero energy affordable housing community in Hawai‘i, NREL Technical Report (2012)

Design and Evaluation of a Net Zero Energy Low-Income Residential Housing Development in Lafayette, Colorado, NREL Technical Report (2012)

A Method for Determining Optimal Residential Energy Efficiency Retrofit Packages, NREL Technical Report (2011)

Ducts in the Attic? What Were They Thinking?, NREL Technical Report (2010)

Preliminary Assessment of the Energy-Saving Potential of Electrochromic Windows in Residential Buildings, NREL Technical Report (2009)

Searching for the Optimal Mix of Solar and Efficiency in Zero Net Energy Buildings, NREL Technical Report (2008)

Habitat for Humanity Zero Energy Home: A Cold-Climate Case Study for Affordable Zero Energy Homes, NREL Technical Report (2008)

Defining a Technology Pathway Leading to New Homes with Zero Peak Cooling Demand, NREL Technical Report (2006)

Analysis of Residential System Strategies Targeting Least-Cost Solutions Leading to Net Zero Energy Homes, NREL Technical Report (2006)

Optimal Building Designs on the Path to Zero Net Energy, NREL Technical Report (2004)

BEopt has been developed by NREL in support of the U. S. Department of Energy Building America Program goal to develop market-ready energy solutions for new and existing homes.