Boulder Energy Codes

If you have been thinking of building a new home or remodeling in Boulder, you may have heard rumors about Boulder’s stringent building codes regarding energy.

A question we are frequently asked is how to understand Boulder’s energy requirements for any particular project and how these requirements will this affect both the design and cost of a project.

First, it is important to understand whether your project is located within Boulder City limits or unincorporated Boulder County because The City of Boulder and Boulder County have similar, but different energy code regulations.

The City of Boulder bases energy requirements for any given project on the valuation of the proposed construction compared to the assessed value of the property (as recorded on the Boulder County assessor’s web site). The higher the percentage, the more stringent the requirements.

Boulder County bases energy requirements for projects on the size of the project. In general, the larger the project, the more stringent the requirements.

Both the City and the County of Boulder require accurate and thorough documentation showing how the project will meet the required energy requirements. This will often require hiring a licensed energy consultant to complete the proposed energy calculations and documentation.

The requirements for energy compliance and documentation for both the City of Boulder and Boulder County do add cost to a project. On average, for a project to meet Boulder’s specific energy requirements, the overall cost of the project will increase roughly 15 – 20%. Although this is a significant cost increase, the result is an efficient building that is less costly to maintain and operate.

For detailed information as it relates to a particular project we have included the City of Boulder and Boulder County website links below.

City of Boulder


Boulder County

At Fänas Architecture we’re happy to help you with the range of all your home and architecture needs. Feel free to contact us.