Green Built Home Certification Levels

Green Built Homes Certified logo
Green Built Homes Silver logo
Green Built Homes Gold logo
Green Built Homes Platinum logo
Green Built Homes Net Zero Ready logo
≤55 HERS Score
Green Built Homes Net Zero logo
≤15 HERS Score
Regenerative Professional logo

Multiple levels of green built home certifications are available (Certified, Silver, Gold, Platinum, Net Zero Ready, Net Zero Energy and Regenerative), ensuring that the program is available to all budgets and experience levels. Homes earn additional points to attain each certification level and in doing so demonstrate that they have exceeded market-level to a significant degree.  We have programs for single family homes, multi family buildings, and entire communities.

Certified Green Built Homes offer the following benefits while also encouraging climate-conscious building and environmentally friendly construction techniques and products.

  • energy & water savings
  • third party verification and quality assurance
  • healthier indoor air and improved occupant comfort
  • access to green building rebates and incentives

Why go Net Zero?

Net Zero Homes help work towards the goal of reducing fossil fuel use to zero by 2050, by reducing energy use and producing renewable energy to offset fossil fuel consumption. A Net-Zero Energy or Net-Zero Ready home is capable of offsetting most or all of its annual energy use. To achieve Net Zero certification a house must meet one of the three Net Zero prerequisites listed below (#17 – 19), and verify projected energy use through a HERS Rating and inspection.

Why go Regenerative?

Do you want the strongest certification you can get? Regenerative buildings are designed and built so that they are integrated and have a net-positive impact on the natural environment 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 human connection with the natural world; or prioritize site restoration and native plantings or food production. Would you like to become accredited as a Regenerative Professional?

Green Built Homes Checklist V3 Rev4

Check out our point system below for details on what the various measures are for certification. They are organized by category (in the order of typical construction phases), how many points you can earn for each one (highlighted in bold), notes when applicable, and links to find more information (noted with an *). If you have questions, please contact our Green Built Homes Project Manager by emailing or calling 828.254.1995.
(Last Updated 06.01.2023)

Prerequisites (Required)

All of these Prerequisites are required. PLEASE NOTE the Net Zero Requirements highlighted in the last column are only required if you are pursuing a Net Zero Certification on top of your normal certification.


Site & Landscape

Healthy outdoors by using erosion control and saving existing trees.
Min 5 pts required

Site Disturbance




Water Efficiency

Lower water bills by using high efficiency irrigation and plumbing fixtures.
Min 5 pts required




Building Envelope

Lower utility bills by using high efficiency windows and insulation.
Min 5 pts required

Foundation Systems

Limit TWO per home (homes with only one foundation type)

Basement with Insulated walls*

* Oak Ridge/DOE Foundation Wall Handbook

Crawlspace with Insulated walls*

* Crawlspace Insulation DOE Factsheet

Basement, Crawlspace, or Cantilevers with Floor Insulation*

* Oak Ridge/DOE Foundation Wall Handbook
* ENERGY STAR Insulation Fact Sheet

Wall Systems

Limit ONE per home

Wood Frame Wall Construction
Alternative Wall Construction: SIPS, ICF, Other


Windows, Doors, Piping, Electrical


Heating & Cooling Systems

Higher comfort with efficiency equipment and sealed air ducts.
Min 5 pts required

Passive Solar Heating and Cooling Strategies

Design and Installation

Ducted systems
Ductless systems

Heating and Cooling Equipment

Mini splits AND conventionally ducted systems are both eligible for the remaining points in this section


Appliances, Lighting, Renewables

Lower utility bills by using Energy Star appliances and lighting
Min 5 pts required




Health & Indoor Air Quality

A healthy interior with non-toxic finishes and minimizing moisture
Min 5 pts required

Contaminant Control

IAQ Material Use



A low maintenance home using durable, local, and recycled content materials
Min 7 pts required

Construction Material Waste

Durability and Moisture Management

Environmentally Preferable Materials


Bonus Points

Bonus points encourage Homeowner education, facilitate Builder relationships, and support Green Built Homes program visibility
Min 3 pts required