RaterFest

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RaterFest! Logo

The "unconference" for energy professionals!


Sept. 24-26, 2021



Click the "Stay in the Loop" button below for updates!

RaterFest 2023 registration is now closed. Sign up for details below for notifications on 2024 RaterFest! 

Thanks so much to everyone who made RaterFest 2023 possible! We can't wait to see you all next time! Sign up for details below to get notified when RaterFest 2024 launches. 

Mark your calendars for September 20-22 for our 14th RaterFest!

Sign up for our 13th RaterFest from September 22-24

We're so excited to see your face this year!


It was a tough decision to cancel RaterFest 2020. As we anticipate gathering again in 2021, we can hardly contain our excitement.  RaterFest is an amazing chance to meet new friends, grow as energy professionals, and soak in Colorado's gorgeous Rocky Mountain scenery. Over the past 10+ years, we've worked hard to create the best training and networking experience for energy professionals.
Grow as energy professionals, create new relationships, and soak in Colorado's gorgeous Rocky Mountain scenery at RaterFest! Over the past 10+ years, we've worked hard to create a deeply engaging, single-track training experience for energy professionals.

Registration is open and it's all inclusive! From lodging to dining, sessions to activities, all you need to do is get here and we'll take care of the rest. RaterFest is an amazing chance to meet new friends, grow as energy professionals, and soak in Colorado's gorgeous Rocky Mountain scenery. Over the past 10+ years, we've worked hard to create the best training and networking experience for energy professionals.


Register Here!
Sign up for details!
Special thanks to our 2022 Gold Leaf Sponsor, Mitsubishi Electric Trane HVAC!
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Interested in sponsoring RaterFest? Learn more here!

Learn more about the experience!


Key Info


Date

Sept 20-22

Location

Empire, CO

Price

$635 - $920

CEUs

RESNET, BPI, & ICC

Capacity

Limited to 100

Housing & Meals

Included in price!


Registration will open soon!

RaterFest Reviews

"Really enjoyed my first time at  RaterFest. Loved the intimacy of a smaller conference with a single track of sessions where we could all learn together, ask questions and network. The location was great and made for an awesome road trip from Oregon."
Laura Klement, Enerstructa

"RaterFest is fantastic! It is a well run weekend event that brings our industry leaders together in a laid back setting in the beautiful state of Colorado."
Matt Zaleski, Energy Diagnostics

"Since this was my first RaterFest, I didn't know what to expect. I was very excited to be a part of the experience this year and am impressed with the information and the sense of community that I experienced at the event.
Dustin Oedewaldt, Thrive Home Builders

"My Team and I had a blast, the venue, sessions, and fire pit shenanigans make this event a must for all building science professions, see you next year!"
Chris Schwarzkopf, EDI

Registration will open soon!

The Venue

Location

30 miles West of Denver sitting on 220 acres, Rocky Mountain Village (RMV) camp is located within the beautiful Colorado Rockies. The camp offers hiking trails, amazing views, a 27-hole disc golf course, and more.

Address

  • 2644 Alvarado Rd
  • Empire, CO 80438

Directions

From Denver:

  • Take I-70 west to exit 232 (Empire/Granby exit toward US 40 E)
  • Veer left at fork and follow the signs for "Easterseals Camp"
  • At the stop sign, continue straight onto Co Rd 257 by passing across US 40
  • Travel 0.5 miles along Co Rd 257 and take a left over the first overpass onto Co Rd 308
  • At the stop sign, cross over Alvarado Rd and enter the driveway with the overhanging "WELCOME" sign
  • The check in is located about 400 yards down the dirt road on the left with a small parking lot

    Lodging Options

    Rocky Mountain Village

    When you sign up to attend RaterFest, housing is included! Enjoy looking through the different housing options below. We are sure you will find one that is perfect for you and your team.

    Enjoy a private room in our Homebuilders Lodge featuring a plus queen bed and beautiful aspen-covered views. Take advantage of the 1,700 ft. boardwalk trail right outside the door. Inside the lodge, you'll find a lounge area with a gas fireplace you can cozy up to, wireless internet, and covered decks where you can enjoy one of our colorful Colorado sunrise or sunsets! If you are looking for serenity this will be your slice of heaven! Linens included (sheets, blanket, comforter, bath towel, pillow and pillowcase).

    $920.00

    Register for RaterFest!
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    RaterFest 2024 Sessions - Coming Soon!

    Eligible attendees can earn CEUs from:

    Earn RESNET CEUs at RaterFest

    18 CEUs

    RaterFest is a RESNET® regional conference. Attending will fulfill ALL of your CEU requirements as a HERS® Rater and/or QAD according to the RESNET Standards!

    Earn BPI CEUs at RaterFest

    7.5 CEUs

    Earn ICC CEUs at RaterFest

    0.7 CEUs

    KEYNOTE SPEAKER

    Certification as a Service

    Goal:
    Identify opportunities, issues, and recommendations for HERS community to enhance builder business outcomes from high-performance home certification working with a Certification as a Service (CaaS) aggregator.

    Purpose:
    Get input and feedback from HERS professionals on a new CaaS aggregator concept for offering significant additional services beyond HERS verification before, during, and after sale designed to enhance high-performance builder outcomes.


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    Sam Rashkin

    Learning Outcomes:

    • Shared understanding of a CaaS aggregator concept for high-performance home programs
    • List of services and that would enhance high-performance home builders’ business outcomes
    • List of issues/concerns HERS professionals might have collaborating with a CaaS aggregator to provide services that enhance high-performance home builder business outcomes

    Measuring Part 5, Refrigerant Charge, of the RESNET/ACCA/ANSI Standard 310

    Joe Medosch {med-osh}

    Joe Medosch will demonstrate how simple it is to measure Part 5, Refrigerant Charge, of the RESNET/ACCA/ANSI Standard 310 This can be completed by Anyone!

    Procedure: using your hand, confirm cold air inside and “beer can cold” refrigerant line outside = Done. Can it be done accurately and w/o being EPA Refrigerant charge certified = Yes. Can you also measure system SCFM, possible return duct leakage, refrigerant charge including superheat and subcooling and check for 100+ faults in the system w/o pressure gauges? measureQuick does!

    Over a dozen studies confirmed most AC systems have either airflow or refrigerant charge faults (or both). A 2018 DOE study found heating and air conditioning installations had at least one fault in 70–90% of homes, and when duct leakage is considered, this number increases to 90–100%. Improper installation leads to increased energy use, comfort issues, warranty claims, callbacks, and higher H/AC repair costs over the lifetime of the equipment.

    Fixing these two faults alone has the potential to decrease residential cooling energy loads by 5–10%. Researchers at NREL estimate that central air conditioners and air-source heat pumps in the US waste 20.7 terawatt hours (TWh) of energy per year due to equipment faults. Convert that to energy generated by hydroelectric - it’s 5.7 times the volume of Lake Mead at its highest level. Which is 8.5 trillion gallons of water.

    Learning Outcomes:

    • Identifying the requirements for part 5 of the RESNET/ACCA/ANSI Standard 310
    • Calculate refrigerant pressure from temperatures
    • Understanding how this option confirms compliance and reduces failures for your builders
    • Learn how to add this to the other sections of Standard 310 and complete the entire compliance pathway
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    The Future of Housing - Panel with Industry Icons & Experts

    Panel members: Colby Swanson, Asa Foss, Nick Hurst, & Sam Rashkin
    Moderator: Steve Byers

    Our panel will explore the future of housing in the near and medium term. We will explore materials prospects, system prospects and fundamental industry paradigm shifts. Sacred cows and dogmatists are not allowed! Vigorous debate is encouraged!  

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    Learning Outcomes:

    • Know what major shifts may happen or be possible in the next 5-10 years
    • Understand constraints to systems and materials no matter how promising
    • Understand status quo obstacles to adoption of anything new
    • Know what materials may be ready for the spotlight in the next 3 years
    Joe Medosch Rants and Raves on Standard 310 and IAQ stuff you may not know!

    Joe Medosch {med-osh} 

    Joe Medosch will kill an hour providing information on Standard 310, who should test stuff, and how, and what IS and IS NOT required. He will continue to fill the hour with IAQ details like What the Experts Aren't Telling you about IAQ Monitors. Then he will lead a thought exercise on how to survive the Wildfire Apocalypse of 2025. What can we do to prevent our homes being uninhabitable and what is the emergency plan when it suddenly occurs where you live. What can I do right now no matter what the cost - extreme reduction of particulates and odors. The remaining time, What, there will not be any remaining time!!

    Learning Outcomes:

    • Learn the requirements for Standard 310
    • Identify what you know about IAQ
    • How to survive the Wildfire Apocalypse of 2025
    • Uncover how to reduce particulates and odors
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    ENERGY STAR® NextGen New Homes

    Asa Foss

    EPA is releasing a new certification label for homes and apartments built with key next-generation features that advance operational decarbonization. ENERGY STAR NextGen starts with ENERGY STAR Single-Family New Homes v3.2 or Multifamily New Construction v1.2, and adds connected space-conditioning heat pumps, connected heat pump water heaters, electric cooking, and electric vehicle charging capability. Come learn more about this program, including financial incentives, and how builders and raters can verify compliance with each of the program’s requirements.
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    Learning Outcomes:

    • Understand the key features of the new program requirements and why EPA has included them.
    • Find out who is already using ENERGY STAR NextGen, including program sponsors.
    • Learn how to verify compliance with this specification.
    • Recognize how this label complements the current ENERGY STAR and DOE Zero Energy Ready Homes program.
    Lower the Guardrails and Lean Into It

    Nick Hurst

    If you’ve been working in the home rating industry for at least a year or so, you may have recently asked, “Why do these ‘industry standards’ and ‘national certification programs’ always seem to be changing?” Or, “Are you serious—they’re releasing yet another update?” Or maybe you’re wondering, “Why can’t they just settle on something simple and stick with it?”.

    Learning Outcomes:

    • Understand how home certification programs create healthier homes without undue complexity.
    • Identify the right balance between rigor and affordability.
    • Uncover how the rating industry helps shape future certification requirements that accelerate the market adoption of high-performance homes.
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    Doing.more.with.less

    Colby Swanson

    Buckle up and get ready for this session on how to do more with less in the construction industry. We are currently experiencing a significant shift towards offsite and prefab methods because onsite methods aren’t working fast enough to solve our housing challenges. In this presentation, we’ll eliminate proof points of this shift, as well as explore ways the rating and home building sectors can, and should, participate and lead as the construction industry repositions itself to do more with less.
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    Learning Outcomes:

    • Demonstrate how to read tea leaves: market signals.
    • Discuss the wind direction and why it is important.
    • Summarize how alternative building methods can help build faster and cheaper.
    • Identify ways to prepare for future changes in the construction industry.
    “Where Do I Go From Here?" Career Paths in the Home Energy Rating Industry

    Scott Doyle

    In years past, there has been a lot of hand-wringing over the perceived issue that there is no real defined career ladder for HERS® Raters.  Yet the absence of well-established paths does not have to doom us all to stagnation.  Every well-worn path was begun by those who blaze the first trails.  This interactive session will delve into the obvious and sometimes not-so-obvious potential career progressions as we highlight the real-life career paths of a group of professionals with diverse backgrounds who collectively hold some of the more significant, and in some cases, high profile jobs in the residential energy space.  Through audience participation, we will discuss professional credentials and what matters to employers.  The intent is that this session leaves each person reflecting on their own personal and professional goals with renewed clarity and perhaps even a bit of inspiration.

    Learning Outcomes:

    • Describe the differences between certifications, designations, and other industry credentials
    • Understand how employers prioritize professional credentials among other traits like skill, aptitude, work ethic, seniority, etc.
    • List certifications, designations, and other credentials that are relevant to the HERS Rating Industry
    • Develop personalized list of credentials to target based on each HERS® Pro’s own individual career goals
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    WaterSense Labeled Homes Verification

    Olga Cano & Jonah Schein

    Deep dive into the verification process and opportunities for efficiency during site visits. The EPA’s WaterSense Labeled Homes program has designed its new specification to better align with other green certification programs, including the existing options for verifier training. This means a better verification experience for building and rating professionals. This session will walk through the minimal checklist items required for any home to achieve certification regardless of which rating system it is being certified through. Flexibilities and regional strategies will also be discussed giving the rating industry insight into the importance of water efficiency for continued urban growth.

    Learning Outcomes:

    • Insight into alignment with other certification programs
    • Understanding of training & QA process
    • Understanding on technical requirements to achieve certification
    • Insight into regional strategies & importance of water efficiency in urban growth

       
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    Heat Pump Water Heaters

    Bruce Manclark

    This class will focus on the sizing, selection and installation of Heat Pump water heaters. Data from recent research will be presented that indicates how best to maximize savings  and reduce customer complaints.

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    Learning Outcomes:

    • How best to size the HPWH for specific applications
    • What are the differences between the various brands of HPWHs
    • How best to mitigate  noise from HPWHs
    • What does research indicate about the space heat interaction between  HPWHS and the home's heating system
    The Wide, Wide World of Opportunities Beyond Ratings

    Steve Byers & Nathan Kahre

    Ratings can and maybe should be the foundation of your business, but there are so many more opportunities to succeed beyond that foundation. We will explore what everyone is doing from around the country to extend their companies, drive growth and better meet customer needs.

    Learning Outcomes:

    • Discuss the impact on your company both pro and con from expanding service
    • Discover opportunities
    • Explore what is needed to tackle new areas
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    An Interactive Discussion on Quality and Culture

    Scott Doyle

    During this session, Scott Doyle will explore how culture impacts the residential energy world. We will focus on the culture of quality and value when it comes to programs and verification services offered by rating companies. Additionally, we will discuss what happens when culture fails to align with quality work.
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    Learning Outcomes:

    • Define culture in the context of the residential energy world
    • Articulate the importance of culture and the role it plays in the quality of RESNET HERS® Ratings, and other code/program verification services offered by rating companies
    • List behaviors and attitudes found in a culture that promotes and values quality
    • Describe outcomes and consequences of a culture that does NOT promote or value quality

    Schedule for Sept. 22- 24, 2023

    Check out our schedule for a weekend of deep learning and fun!
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    Pervious RaterFest Speakers

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    Sam Rashkin - Keynote

    Founder of Retooling the U.S. Housing Industry

    As founder for “Retooling the U.S. Housing Industry”, Sam is a published author, trainer, and consultant who has been preparing our nation’s home builders for major disruptions looming ahead. In his prior role as Chief Architect for the Department of Energy’s Building Technologies Office, Sam’s led deployment of proven housing innovations including directing the Zero Energy Ready Home (ZERH) program.

    This work built upon his experience leading ENERGY STAR® for Homes from its inception in 1996 to more than 8,000 builder partners, over one million labeled homes. During his 20-plus years as a licensed architect, he specialized in energy efficient design and completed over 100 residential projects. He has served on the national Steering Committees for USGBC’s LEED for Homes, NAHB’s Green Builder Guidelines, and U.S. EPA’s Water Sense and Indoor airPLUS™ labels. Mr. Rashkin has been recognized for his contributions to sustainable housing in 2019 with the EEBA Legend Award and in 2012 with the Hanley Award. Find Sam on LinkedIn.


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    Peter Troast

    Founder & CEO of Energy Circle

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    Steve Byers

    CEO of EnergyLogic

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    Nathan Kahre

    Innovations & Insights Manager at EnergyLogic

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    FAQs

    Your Questions Answered
    RaterFest is a truly unique experience - it's ok to have questions! Don't see the answer you're looking for here? Contact Sunny!

    What clothing should I bring to the conference?

    Casual and comfortable attire! Being in the mountains we have unpredictable weather, so pack layers! Bring a jacket, hat, mittens and a scarf if you prefer. Anything that keeps you warm on those colder days and nights.

    What about shoes?

    Comfortable walking shoes, hiking boots if you plan on hitting the trails, slippers for hanging out in your lodge or cabin. There are community showers in the cabins and lodges. Bring your shower shoes if this is something you prefer.

    I am flying into Denver International Airport, how do I get to the venue?

    Your best option (if you don't intend on renting a car) will be a ride-share service like Lyft or Uber from the airport to the venue. We will also set up a carpooling form so you can split the ride-share cost with a fellow attendee. Don't forget your RETURN ride back to the airport. It will be important for you to set up your return ride-share prior to your Sunday departure. The location is a bit remote and can be hard to find a ride-share if you wait last minute.

    Will you have a first aid kit?

    Yes! We will have Band-Aids, Neosporin, allergy medicine, ibuprofen, and bug spray. If you need something specific for your medical needs, please be sure to bring that with you.

    Where is the nearest hospital?

    Centura St. Anthony Summit Hospital (33.2 miles)
    Denver Health (40.8 miles)

    Is there WIFI at the venue?

    Yes, although it can be spotty. Feel free to bring your laptop and charging cord. You can also bring a notebook and paper!

    Will my cell phone work up in the mountains?

    This is another tricky question. You should have decent cell reception depending on your cell phone carrier, but there is no guarantee. The venue has landlines available if you need to place a call.

    Does the venue have proper lighting at night?

    Bringing a flashlight or headlamp is a great idea. The mountains tend to be very dark unless it's a clearer night and the moonlight can help pave your way.

    2023 Rocky Mountain Sponsors

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    Special thanks to
    Tape Guys
    for being our Session Space sponsor!


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    Special thanks to
    Mitsubishi Electric Heating & Air Conditioning
    for being our Dining Hall sponsor!



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    Special thanks to Mitsubishi Electric Heating & Air Conditioning for being our Innovation sponsor!

    RaterFest Photos

    Here are just a few of our favorite photos... It's hard to choose from so many happy moments!


    RaterFest is deeply committed to high-quality training AND fun. Every year, the weekend features RaterOlympics, ping pong tournament, yard games, hikes, great company, break-out sessions, and so much more! 

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    Offered Activities

    Schedule



    Rater Olympics
    Ping Pong Competition
    Rater Jam

    Schedule



    Rater Olympics
    Ping Pong Competition
    Rater Jam
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    Past Years

    Previous Sessions

    Zero Energy Ready Home HERS Rater Roundtable
    Presented by: Sam Bowles, Jamie Lyons, and Joe Nebbia

    Marketing Energy Conservation Through The Ages
    Presented by: Bruce Manclark

    Chemical Dependency - The price of addiction to chemicals in building materials
    Presented by: Joe Medosch

    The Oregon Trail: Making Energy Labels Normal
    Presented by: David Heslam

    The Winds of Change- An Update on RESNET Quality Assurance and Technical Standards
    Presented by: Scott Doyle

    What Should a Rating Really Include? 
    Presented by: Darrell Lehman & Mike Collignon

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