Residential Zero Net Energy Guide

Guideline / April 10, 2018 / Zero Net Energy

This guide focuses on the general elements of ZNE homes and provides links to the specific details and requirements of Title 24 (energy code) and Home Energy Rating System (HERS) verification (field verified and tested).


In December 2016, the Santa Monica City Council adopted a ZNE ordinance that requires low-rise residential new construction buildings to be 15% more efficient than 2016 Title 24 and achieve an Energy Design Rating (EDR) of zero, or less (EDR ≤ 0). The ordinance applies to single family homes, including townhomes, and low-rise multifamily residential projects less than or equal to three stories. The ZNE ordinance compliments Santa Monica’s previously adopted solar ordinance.

Although there is no one-size-fits-all approach, best practices like the ones outlined in this guide can help your project achieve ZNE.