Feb 3, 2014 6:00 PM  PST

GreenPoint Rated's Rapid Growth

Our pioneering home rating system is steadily transforming California's housing market

This article appeared in Build It Green's 2012-2013 Impact Report.
 
When Build It Green launched the GreenPoint Rated program, we had a goal of certifying more than 10,000 homes. Today we have achieved and surpassed that goal, with 21,000 homes GreenPoint Rated and 17,000 more in the pipeline. Those homes have saved a staggering amount of energy, water, and carbon emissions.

The success of the program is due in large part to the commitment of forward-thinking builders and developers. From KB Home to Taylor Morrison, the best builders recognize that an independent third-party green home certification can boost their sales and customer satisfaction. This is affirmed by new research showing that the effort to build market value for green homes through certification is paying off. A groundbreaking study released in 2012 by UC Berkeley and UCLA showed that home buyers were willing to pay up to 9% more for a home with a green label.

Our builders appreciate that GreenPoint Rated is accessible, affordable, and compatible with CALGreen. Many of them also rely on their GreenPoint Raters to provide that extra set of eyes on the job, ensuring the green building elements have been installed. "GreenPoint Rated was developed in partnership with builders and has helped them stay ahead of code and differentiate their product," says Nathan Krantz, Build It Green's Technical Services Director. "In the past two years, GreenPoint Rated solidified its status as the most trusted certification for green homes in California. We've shown that a well-designed rating system can help everybody win—policymakers, home builders, raters, contractors, and homeowners."

Building Demand for GreenPoint Rated

In 2012 and 2013 Build It Green invested in a major marketing and sales effort to boost our support for these partners. We developed new collateral materials, signage, sales customer support and sales trainings so builders could more effectively sell GreenPoint Rated homes. We also launched a home buyer advertising campaign to educate buyers about the benefits of buying a GreenPoint Rated home, and to drive them to the builders' websites. Through that ad campaign, we had over 6.4 million impressions, with nearly 70,000 people taking action to learn more about GreenPoint Rated.

To help builders market their green projects to local governments, we made it easier to access data on environmental savings by streamlining our online tracking system and adding in a climate calculator. The climate calculator helps builders more easily document the avoided GHGs of their projects to local governments, potentially easing the way for entitlements.

Helping Local Jurisdictions

Green building in California will take its next leap forward in 2014 with the updated state energy codes that raise the bar for cities and counties. "As codes change and become more complex, GreenPoint Rated becomes an attractive plug-and-play solution for local jurisdictions to simplify compliance," explains Krantz. "We provide green building standards, verification protocols, data collection forms, and training for government staff. Certified GreenPoint Raters can manage all paperwork and verification, easing the burden for city building inspectors."

What's Next: Version 6.0

In 2014, the State of California will implement the 2013 California Codes and Regulations along with Building Energy Efficiency Standards (Title 24, Part 6 and 11) with stronger minimum standards. The GreenPoint Rated program has been revised to align with those standards with the new Version 6.0 release. GreenPoint Rated Version 6.0, to be implemented January 2014 after extensive stakeholder engagement, continues to reflect the leading edge of green building practices and provide a third-party green building certification that goes above and beyond the CALGreen code. The full checklist and manuals are available at builditgreen.org.

Looking ahead, as the state moves toward its 2020 net-zero energy requirement, GreenPoint Rated will gradually revise its energy requirements and increase the weight of other green building factors—water and resource conservation, indoor air quality, and community.

For additional information on this article, please contact:
 
Luis Espinoza
(510) 590-3360
 
Source: Build It Green  

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