Administered by the Asheville-based nonprofit Green Built Alliance, Green Built Homes is updating its statewide certification program this year to incentivize builders to incorporate elements of regenerative design in their projects.
Formerly known as NC HealthyBuilt Homes, the Green Built Homes program has certified 1,600 houses by more than 250 builders across North Carolina since its inception in 2004.
As codes have changed and technologies have advanced in the 15 years since the program’s inception in 2004, Green Built Homes has continually evolved to encourage positive changes in the building industry and highlight new opportunities to make projects more sustainable.
Most recently, in 2015, the program added a Net Zero Ready and Net Zero Energy Certification to reward builders of homes that produce as much energy on site as they use over the course of a year.
Now in 2019, through the support of the Kendeda Fund and local partners, the Green Built Homes program is poised to take the next leap toward regenerative buildings.
The certification system will evolve beyond its current approach of rewarding features that make homes “less bad” for homeowners and the environment to begin encouraging more regenerative elements that actually improve the world around them. For example, a home with regenerative elements may produce more energy than it uses; capture and treat water onsite; incorporate biophilic design to enhance connection with the natural world; or prioritize site restoration and native plantings or food production.
“Many local builders and architects are ready for the challenge, inspiration and recognition of an advanced, regenerative version of Green Built Homes,” said Green Built Alliance Program Director Maggie Leslie, who manages the Green Built Homes program. “In addition, embedding items throughout the checklist will educate and inspire builders of all levels with new ideas.”
As Green Built Homes looks toward the next chapter of weaving regenerative elements into its program, it is also celebrating the success of its Net Zero Certification. In three years, the program has certified 26 Net Zero Energy homes with several completed in the last months of 2018.
In December 2018, a Platinum Net Zero Energy project completed by Asheville’s Sure Foot Builders received a HERS (Home Energy Rating System) Index of -10 and attained 313 Green Built Homes points, setting a Green Built Homes program record for the lowest HERS Index to date.
See below for information about the five Platinum Net Zero Energy projects certified by Green Built Homes in November and December of 2018.