Green Building Certifications

We hear a lot of buzz today about green building, but how can we tell what is “real” and what is just fluff? One of the ways you can tell is whether or not the home is certified by a national third party program.

That’s why we’re certified in the leading green building programs. For the homebuyer, these programs are like the nutrition label on the side of a cereal box; it clearly labels in measurable terms that the home has healthy, green, efficient features that have been third-party verified.

Each home in Mt. Tabor Meadows has been built to meet ENERGY STAR and EarthCraft House certifications, and now homeowners have an option to also build their home to meet the EPA Indoor airPLUS certification. And as of June 2010, Mt. Tabor Meadows is home to the New River Valley’s first LEED Silver certified home. So let’s take a quick look at each of these programs:

FIrst LEED home in New River Valley

EarthCraft Virginia

Building an EarthCraft house is about constructing a healthy, more valuable home while minimizing environmental impacts. EarthCraft follows a systems approach to home building that stresses an understanding of how the different components of a home work together. This approach results in a home that performs better, is more economical for the homeowner and costs little more to build than a comparable home built with standard construction practices.

Energy Star

To earn the ENERGY STAR, a home must meet strict guidelines for energy efficiency set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. These homes are at least 15% more energy efficient than homes built to the 2004 International Residential Code (IRC), and include additional energy-saving features that typically make them 20–30% more efficient than standard homes.

EPA Indoor AirPlus

The EPA created Indoor airPLUSto help builders meet the growing consumer preference for homes with improved indoor air quality. More than 30 additional design and construction features protect you against moisture and mold, pests, combustion gases, radon, and other airborne pollutants in your home. It also provides a more comfortable living environment because it includes properly engineered HVAC system sizing, improved duct and equipment installation, improved filtration, and whole-house and spot ventilation to dilute and remove indoor pollutants.

Leed for Homes

LEED for Homesis a rating system that promotes the design and construction of high-performance green homes. Green homes use less energy, water and natural resources, create less waste, and are more durable and comfortable for occupants. LEED is an internationally recognized green building certification system, providing third-party verification that a building or community was designed and built using strategies aimed at improving performance across all the metrics that matter most.

Why is Green Better?