National Green Building Standard (NGBS) Certification

Sustainability and Green Building

Why Certify?

  • To make your homes or communities stand apart from the competition
  • To expedite permitting, qualify for tax credits and/or earn incentives
  • To increase the sale and resale value of the property

What is the Value of Third-Party Green Certification?

The National Green Building Standard® (NGBS) is an ANSI-approved, third-party certified, residential building standard that provides a flexible and affordable way to verify your green construction practices in your single-family, multifamily, remodeling and land development projects.

The NGBS Green certification demonstrates high-performance building in six areas: Lot Design and Development, Resource Efficiency, Water Efficiency, Energy Efficiency, Indoor Environmental Quality, and Building Operation & Maintenance.

Four levels of certification are available: Bronze, Silver, Gold and Emerald.

The program also offers a NGBS Green Land Development Certification for residential and mixed-use communities. All land development projects are eligible to be certified as long as some of the parcels will eventually be developed with residential buildings. Land development certification is independent of the certification of the homes and buildings that will ultimately be constructed. Four levels of certification are also available in this program, ranging from One-Star through Four-Star.

The NGBS program is administered through the Home Innovation Research Labs™.

How Do I Get Started?

  1. Develop a Strategy
    Have a strategy for incorporating the green features, amenities and products to make sure you meet all requirements and can achieve your target certification level. Completing the 2015 NGBS scoring spreadsheet will enable you to see if you are on track. The NGBS Reference Guide and Builder’s Resource Guide are also available for free download.

    Home Innovation’s database of its Green Certified Products can also help you meet your certification goal by using pre-approved products.
  2. Hire a Verifier
    Your certification process must be overseen by an NGBS Green Verifier or NGBS Master Green Verifier. Consult the list of verifiers in your area.

    Verifiers are accredited by Home Innovation Research Labs and conduct the required inspections, complete the scoring spreadsheet and handle the administrative aspects of your certification. The earlier you bring a verifier on board (no later than prior to drywall installation in order to conduct the rough inspection) the more value he/she can add to the project by helping you build in efficiencies from the start and identifying synergies that may save you money and improve the performance of the home.

The Certification Process



  • Review certification requirements before lot development. Site Design is a certification category and planning decisions can affect certification ability and levels.
  • Incorporate high-performance, green amenities and products into your project.
    Use Home Innovation’s NGBS Green Certification Resources.
  • Provide your preliminary scoring spreadsheet to your verifier.


  • Document your green construction practices and products.
  • Schedule a rough inspection with your verifier to be conducted before drywall installation.
    This report will be submitted to Home Innovation.
  • At completion of construction, schedule a final inspection with your verifier.


  • NGBS certification requires two onsite inspections: a rough inspection after framing before drywall is installed and a final inspection at construction completion.
  • Sign the final Verification Report; your verifier must submit it to Home Innovation within 30 days. Home Innovation will review the report and — assuming all documentation is complete — it will issue a “Home Innovation Green Certified” certificate in one business day.