Home Performance Program: Information for Contractors

HPP Contractor Information

To become a SMUD Qualified Home Energy Contractor, work with the California Building Performance Contractors Association to follow the steps outlined below.

Contractors participating in the SMUD Home Performance Program must have a valid California contractor's license, appropriate bonding and specified certifications and/or training for the work being performed.

Step 1: Find Out If You Qualify
Confirm if you meet the license and insurance requirements for participation in SMUD's Home Performance Program.

Step 2: Complete a Participation Workshop
Attend a mandatory Participation Workshop before applying to the program.

Step 3: Get Trained
If you do not already have a BPI-Building Analyst-certified individual on staff, you need to either participate in a Basic Path training in order to complete Basic Path jobs, or become BPI-BA-certified in order to complete Comprehensive Path and Basic Path jobs.

Step 4: Apply to Participate
Submit the SMUD Contractor Application to apply to the Energy Upgrade California program.


Contractor Frequently Asked Questions

What requirements do contractors meet to become SMUD Qualified Home Energy Contractors?
All applicants are reviewed to ensure their contractor's license is in good standing with the Contractors State License Board, and that all insurance coverage meets the District's requirements.

What does BPI certification mean?
Building Performance Institute (BPI) certification is required by state and local municipalities in order to participate in energy efficiency incentive and rebate programs. To become BPI certified, you must meet stringent, nationally recognized standards by passing both written and field exams.

With BPI certification, you can complete energy efficient upgrades and improvements to qualify your clients for rebates and incentives. Since BPI credentials are recognized across the country, you can complete work throughout the state of California or the nation.

Who should take the training courses?
Anyone interested in conducting business in whole-house energy efficiency auditing, retrofitting or remodeling, including:

  • Remodelers
  • HVAC contractors
  • Solar contractors
  • Insulation contractors
  • General contractors
  • Construction workers interested in expanding their skills

How many exams are required?
There are multiple certifications offered by BPI, but to participate in the SMUD Home Performance program, only the Building Analyst certification is required. To obtain this certification, both a written and hands-on field test are required.

How much does it cost to take the exams?
The written BPI exams cost from $125 to $150 per exam. Field exams cost $415 each. The same costs apply if you are retaking an exam.

How can I prepare for the written exams?
While courses are not required to test for BPI certification, they are encouraged. There are many affiliates available to offer BPI training; please visit the BPI website to find offerings in your area.

What should I expect for the exams?
You will take a 100-question exam and field exam that covers certain fundamentals of building science, as well as, knowledge specific to the designation being attempted.

If you are seeking more than one certification, then you will also take a 50-question exam in the certification designation and complete the field exams.

What is required to pass the exams?
To successfully pass each exam, you must earn an overall score of 70 percent or higher. The Combustion Appliance Zone (CAZ) and Carbon Monoxide (CO) sections of the field exam must be completed with a grade of 85 percent or higher.

How long does it take to process the exams?
Exam results are processed in four to six weeks.

When does BPI certification expire?
You must recertify every three years.


Contractor Resources

Energy Upgrade Californis
License and Certification Resources Contractor Training Resources Contractor Training Reimbursement Resources Recommended Home Performance Equipment List Job Opportunities

Related Topics

  • The District offers programs to provide equal opportunity to all segments of the business community.
  • SMUD is nationally recognized as a leader in renewable resources and electric transportation.
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Home performance tips

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Need more information?

Call us at 1-888-742-7683 to speak with a customer service representative, or email us.