The New American Home (TNAH) featured by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) at this years International Builders Show (IBS) shows the importance of “Green” certifications for now and in the future. The New American home was designed and built by Phil Kean Designs | Architect & Builder. The home is a modern design featuring the latest in “green products” throughout the home. Two Trails Inc. was the Green Building Consulting Firm chosen to work with the design team to achieve top accolades in all the corresponding certification standards. Two Trails works with the design team to track and verify that the home is being built to the standards set by each individual program. “The 2012 New American Home Design Team, Product Suppliers, and NAHB leadership team was a great collaboration of teamwork to achieve this amazing project. We are honored to be a part of this great team!” Drew Smith President of Two Trails. Third party verifiers play an important role in building process. Builders that adhere to green building practices verified by an independent certifier receive huge benefits. A couple of those benefits is a better built home that exceeds the standards set by building codes. They also have proof that their project is “green”. Some home builders market that their project is green, with a National or Locally recognized program verified by a third party provides accountability that the home truly is “green” with documentation to prove it, not just marketing hype.
Below are the Certifications that The 2012 New American Home has achieved:
EMERALD - Green Building Certification Program by NAHB Research Center | Two Trails is a third party Verifier for NAHB Green Certification program. We can assist you in stretching your financial resources and take the guesswork out of figuring the point system. Two Trails can help your project achieve multiple certifications within different programs. Two Trails is proud to have been chosen as the certifying agent for the NAHB: New American home for 2011 achieving Emerald status, the highest certification level for NAHB. Two Trails has also been selected as the certifying agent for the 2011, 2012, and 2013 NAHB: New American Home showcase house. Our Principal Drew Smith was recently been awarded the NAHB: Certified Green Professional of the Year for 2010.
PLATINUM - USGBC LEED for Homes | A LEED-certified home is designed and constructed in accordance with the rigorous guidelines of the LEED for Homes green building certification program. LEED for Homes is a consensus-developed, third party-verified, voluntary rating system which promotes the design and construction of high-performance green homes. Two Trails specializes in providing the guidance to make sure your financial resources are working for you to achieve the certification level you seek. We work with builders or as an independent certification agent. We want you to succeed and we will show you how!
PLATINUM - FGBC Florida Green Building Coalition | Many homeowners are desiring and some insisting that their home be earth friendly, affordable to operate, and healthy to live in. FGBC’s Green Home Standard is a tool that will guide you and your customer through the process of selecting green features that are cost effective, benefit the environment, and will fit in with your current practice. The standard has been developed such that it is achievable by everyone and will be recognized as a statewide industry standard. Two Trails is a certifying agent for this state standard. Two Trails currently has over 4000 homes under contract and many of them qualify for multiple certifications and so can yours.
U.S. Department of Energy - Energy Star Certification | To ensure that a home meets ENERGY STAR guidelines, third–party verification by a certified Home Energy Rater like Two Trails is required. Two Trails works closely with the builder throughout the construction process to help determine the needed energy–saving equipment and construction techniques and conduct required on–site diagnostic testing and inspections to document that the home is eligible to earn the ENERGY STAR label. To earn the ENERGY STAR, a home must meet strict guidelines for energy efficiency set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), making them 20–30% more efficient than standard homes. Homes achieve this level of performance through a combination of energy–efficient improvements, including,
- Effective Insulation Systems
- High–Performance Windows
- Tight Construction and Ducts
- Efficient Heating and Cooling Equipment
- ENERGY STAR Qualified Lighting and Appliances
Florida Yards and Neighborhoods Designation | For new developments with homeowners associations, the developer must incorporate the Model Florida-Friendly Landscaping™ (FFL) Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions, implement the Florida-Friendly principles through the restrictions, and pass a follow-up inspection approximately two years following opening of the community to keep the Florida-Friendly designation. In order to receive the certificate the project must adhere to nine basic principles.
- Right Plant, Right Place
- Water Efficiently
- Fertilize Appropriately
- Attract Wildlife
- Manage Yard Pests Responsibly
- Recycle Yard Waste
- Reduce Stormwater Runoff
- Protect the Waterfront
GOLD - Florida Water Star Certification | Florida Water StarSM is a voluntary, third-party certification program designed to increase water efficiency in landscapes, irrigation systems and indoor uses. While many certification programs provide general guidelines for water efficiency, Florida Water StarSM specifically addresses uses relevant to Florida. The program consists of criteria for three types of construction/development:
- Residential: First house certified in July 2006, with approximately 50 houses certified through 2008.
- Commercial: Currently being pilot-tested on multiple commercial uses.
- Community: Criteria are currently under development and being pilot-tested.
Florida Water StarSM can be effectively integrated into projects along with other programs such as ENERGY STAR®, the Florida Green Building Coalition’s (FGBC) green standards, and the U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC) LEED program. When compared to many other green building certifications, Florida Water StarSM is noticeably more detailed and relevant to Florida’s unique conditions, and can therefore further enhance the effectiveness of other green certification programs.
US DOE’s Builders Challenge | Spearheaded by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), the Builders Challenge is a voluntary effort to provide compelling answers. Through the Builders Challenge, participating homebuilders will have an easy way to differentiate their best energy-performing homes from other products in the marketplace, and to make the benefits clear to buyers.
DOE's ultimate vision is that, by 2030, a consumer will have the opportunity to buy a cost-neutral, net-zero energy home (NZEH) anywhere in the United States — a grid-connected home that, over the course of a year, produces as much energy as it uses. The Builders Challenge establishes a framework for continuous improvement that will help propel the market toward zero-energy performance.
The Builders Challenge is based on lessons learned from the Building America Research Program — a private/public partnership that develops energy solutions for new and existing homes.
Indoor AirPLUS Certification | The Environmental Protection Agency created Indoor airPLUS to help builders meet the growing consumer preference for homes with improved indoor air quality. By constructing homes that meet EPA's stringent specifications, forward-thinking builders can distinguish themselves by being among the first to offer homes designed to deliver improved indoor air quality.
About Two Trails, Inc. | Two Trails, Inc. is a Green Building Consulting firm established in 2001. We provide green consulting services nationwide for commercial, residential, remodeling, and developments looking to obtain LEED USGBC (U.S. Green Building Council), National Green Building Certification Program by NAHB Research Center, Energy Star, & Florida Green Building Coalition (FGBC) certifications.
Our President, Drew M. Smith, LEED AP, was the founding President of the Florida Green Building Coalition and is the first Governor appointed Green Building Commissioner for the State of Florida. Two Trails, Inc. provides hands-on consulting making it easy to achieve certification.
Two Trails, Inc.
Communications and Marketing Manager
tom at twotrails.com