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"This is great news for our members and for all home builders, but more importantly it's great news for home buyers," said NAHB Vice President and Secretary Bob Jones, a home builder in Bloomfield Hills, Mich. Jones announced the program launch during a press conference at the International Builders' Show in Orlando, Fla.
The New American Home™, which celebrates its 25th anniversary this year, was the first show home to be certified in the new program. The project was awarded "gold" level certification during ceremonies Feb. 12.
"We green builders have wanted to see these sustainable building practices go mainstream for years, because we have always known that it's the right thing to do," said Green Building Subcommittee chair Ray Tonjes, a home builder in Austin, Texas, who joined Jones for the announcement.
The program features a dynamic online scoring tool at www.nahbgreen.org, which shows the builder how to accrue points in seven categories: water, energy and resource efficiency; lot and site development; indoor environmental quality; global impact and homeowner education. The program sets point requirements in each category for the bronze, silver and gold levels.
Homes are inspected and verified by local green experts and the documentation is sent to the NAHB Research Center for review. If the project qualifies, the home can receive national certification from the Research Center, Tonjes explained.
Local home builders associations will continue to provide education, advocacy and promotional assistance to their green builders using new, expanded resources from NAHB, Jones said.
The International Builders' Show attracts members of the industry from around the country for four days of education, exhibits and special events. The NAHB National Green Building Program announcement was part of the show's special "Green Day" events on Feb. 14.