ResStock Research Estimates $49 Billion Savings with Home Energy Efficiency Improvements

Dec. 29, 2017 | Contact media relations

48 states. Millions of homes. $49 billion in utility bill savings.

These staggering numbers show the powerful potential of ResStock, a new NREL tool. NREL researchers have estimated $49 billion in potential annual utility bill savings for residents in 48 states through cost-effective, energy-efficient improvements.

Part of the advanced analytics research at NREL, ResStock was developed as a versatile tool that takes a new approach to large-scale residential energy analysis. It combines the following:

  • Large public and private data sources
  • Statistical sampling
  • Detailed subhourly building simulations
  • High-performance computing.

This combination achieves unprecedented granularity and accuracy in modeling the diversity of the single-family housing stock. With NREL’s Peregrine supercomputer, the ResStock team has run more than 20 million simulations using a statistical model of housing stock characteristics.

With this data, researchers have uncovered $49 billion in potential savings. The energy-efficient measures are summarized for all of the states, excluding Hawaii and Alaska, in a series of new fact sheets.

Released in November, the fact sheets include information about the top 10 improvements, percentage of energy used by single-family homes that can be saved (17–31%), and number of existing jobs in energy efficiency fields. The data is customized to each state.

"ResStock allows city planners around the country to determine the most effective energy efficiency measures for their particular location by taking into account the local climate, fuel prices, and home types," said Chuck Kutscher, director of the NREL Buildings and Thermal Sciences Center.   

Resources like ResStock are targeted to help states, municipalities, utilities, and manufacturers identify the building stock improvements that save the most energy and money. The ResStock software is offered at no cost.

"Since launching ResStock, we’ve been partnering with cities, utilities, and technology companies," said Eric Wilson, NREL buildings engineer and ResStock manager. "Those wanting to run their own analyses—evaluating specific technologies, defining additional cost-effectiveness equations, or plugging in hyperlocal data for a city or utility service territory, can use the free and open-source software themselves using cloud computing or partner with NREL."

ResStock has been supported by the U.S. Department of Energy, both the Building Technologies Office and the Office of Energy Policy and Systems Analysis, with significant contributions from other external partners. ResStock is part of the advanced analytics research at NREL that provides data-driven analytics to target and scale-up investment in residential energy efficiency and demand response to the grid.

Learn more about NREL buildings research.