Utility Allowance Studies

As required by HUD, periodic Utility Allowance (UA) adjustments are needed for tenant-paid utilities for any federally assisted housing. CHS has performed UA analysis for PHAs, Section 8 and private affordable housing providers throughout the USA. CHS uses the Engineering Method to determine tenant paid UA values. Find more information here. 

One of the significant advantages of using the Engineering Method is that unless the physical characteristics of the property change (new windows, insulation etc.) the Engineering Method spreadsheets can be used forever and only the utility rates require adjustment on an annual basis. CHS provides the client with the UA spreadsheets and instructions on how to make the annual utility rate adjustments. This allows the client to maintain the UAs and annually adjust them quickly, as opposed to the consumption method that requires weeks of gathering utility bills from residents/ utility companies.

CHS conducts a four-phase process for all utility allowance calculations.

CHS has found that UAs calculated using the Engineering Method (EM) are often much lower than those calculated using the Consumption Method. Use of the EM allowances encourages energy conservation by the tenants. It also provides a greater cash flow to the property.