There was change in the air last week at the ACCA Conference and Indoor Air Expo in Las Vegas (no pun intended). Gone are the terms heating and cooling, HVAC, zoning, and IAQ. They have been replaced with, energy audit, home performance, BPI, and building envelope.

From the stage Paul Stalknecht announced the new mission of ACCA, which reads in part: “to lead America’s professional indoor environment and energy contractors to business success.” Stalknecht also announced a new building performance council of ACCA members that specialize in that emerging market.

Then the outgoing chairman, Joe Nichter, talked about a new ANSI standard on home evaluation and performance that ACCA was instrumental in drafting. Several seminars focused on that word “performance” again, with an emphasis on contractors expanding their businesses to include energy audits and total home inspections. You also couldn't escape this movement at the Expo with exhibitors like Comfort Institute, Dr Energy Saver, and Green Homes America all extolling the virtues of performance contracting.

I can see a major market trend when it slaps me in the face. HVAC contractors need to take a serious look at Home Performance Contracting. It is coming to our industry and it is coming fast. In case you need more proof, Carrier held a press conference to announce their new Energy Experts program for Carrier dealers centering around ... you guessed it — home performance contracting.