In 2005, the NAHB created the NAHB Model Green Home Building Guidelines as a way to capture the essential principles of green home building and provide its members and affiliates with a basis for creating their own local green initiatives. The guidelines represented a “snapshot in time” and were never intended to be the enduring definition of what “green” means in residential construction.

As interest in and scrutiny of green building grew, the NAHB and ICC embarked upon a journey to create a consensus-based industry standard for green home building that was rigorous, flexible, and could be used as a basis for a national green home certification platform. The result of this effort was the ICC-700 2008 National Green Building Standard, approved by ANSI in January 2009. The Consensus Committee that developed the standard used the NAHB guidelines as a springboard for its discussion and planning, but ultimately developed criteria for the standard that exceeded those in the guidelines both in performance and scope. Following the ANSI development process also allowed the document to have a built-in mechanism for regular updates and public comment, unlike the guidelines.

In January 2008 the guidelines were used as the green rating system for the national certification program in anticipation of the standard becoming available shortly thereafter.

The NAHB and the NAHB Research Center have concluded that, now that the standard is available, certification to the guidelines is creating significant confusion in the marketplace and among policy makers. Furthermore, the standard, which is based on the IECC 2006 for the energy-efficiency practices, is more relevant as an above-code green rating system than the guidelines. For these reasons, certification to the guidelines will sunset, and the NAHB Research Center will not accept any rough verification reports for certification to the guidelines after June 1, 2010, nor any final verification reports for certification to the guidelines after Sept. 1, 2010. There will be no changes in the certification protocols for certification to the standard.

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