Green Building Ratings | New Homes Market Center
One challenge home buyers face is comparing one green home to another. Any home can be called green, but how does the homeowner know that it is really green or “green enough”? Certification helps and is something that consumers can look for to readily identify green homes that have been third party inspected, performance-tested, and certified to perform better than conventional homes.
There are more than 70 regional and national green building rating programs. They vary somewhat, but they all incorporate similar elements such as incorporating water efficient products and processes; using products and building techniques that are energy efficient; increasing indoor air quality by using environmentally safe products and green building practices; utilizing renewable energy options, reducing waste and recycling during the building process; and incorporating smart growth and sustainable land development practices.
The two most common green building rating systems are the LEED® Green Building Rating System™ and the ENERGY STAR rating system. The United States Green Building Council created the LEED® Green Building Rating System™. LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. It is a leading green building rating system for developing high-performance, sustainable buildings. ENERGY STAR is a backed by the government’s Environmental Program Agency. The ENERGY STAR symbol designates energy efficiency. Both require green buildings to be independently verified and ensure strict guidelines are met before awarding certification.