In early October, the home building industry hit an important milestone when the NAHB Research Center provided National Green Building Certification for its 500th project, and the Research Center anticipates doubling this number of certifications by the end of this year!

The certification recognizes projects that have met stringent criteria in energy, water and resource efficiency, indoor environmental quality, and lot and site design. Certification also requires homeowners to be educated by the builder to help ensure that their homes operate as efficiently as they were built.

The NAHB Research Center administers National Green Building Certification by training and accrediting local verifiers who inspect each new home during the construction process and after the home is completed. Currently, there are nearly 400 accredited verifiers nationwide.

With close to 150 completed certifications as of mid-November, North Carolina is the state with the most Green Certified homes. About a third of those homes were constructed by a single builder, Shugart Enterprises, which has had more homes certified to the National Green Building Standard than any other builder in the country.

Jim Pepitone, president of Ark Contractors in Madison, Conn., recently completed a home that was certified to the Emerald, or highest, level of the standard.

“The high standards and rigor of third-party certification are part of our corporate culture,” says Michael Luzier, president of the NAHB Research Center.

The first step in having a project achieve National Green Building Certification is to score it using the free Green Scoring Tool at The scoring tool gives builders and designers an opportunity to work through various design scenarios to easily figure out what makes the most sense for a given project in a given market. The tool also allows projects to be saved for later use or adjustment, and copied for greater convenience scoring multiple projects with the same basic design.

Once a project is scored, be sure to contact an accredited verifier to schedule a rough inspection. All accredited verifiers are listed on the NAHBGreen website as well.

For more information, visit, or call 877-NAHB-GRN.