EarthCraft Certification

Earth Craft House - Virginia

EarthCraft and Green Building

EarthCraft and other green building programs offer smart solutions to maximize efficiency and comfort while reducing the overall impact to our environment. Several factors make up green building:
  • Building beyond what is required by code is a common strategy;
  • Saving energy and reducing operating costs are part of the formula for paybacks to the homeowner;
  • Building green has more resilience and durability--the builder creates a better product;
  • Quality-built green homes have better indoor air quality and comfort levels--the homeowner has a better living environment.

How EarthCraft is Different

Quality and Assurance. 
All EarthCraft programs use program guidelines, a points-based worksheet, site visits and diagnostic testing to verify that each project complies with program standards.
See Home Energy Rating System.

Project teams work with an EarthCraft Technical Advisor, who provides support in meeting program requirements from early in the design phase until construction is completed.

Customized to the South East. 
EarthCraft is designed to work with the climate conditions specific to the Southeast.  Insulation and air conditioning strategies differ from northern to southern climates; rather than suggest a general strategy for all construction, our program designs homes to effectively deal with the climate specific to this area.

More about the certification

1. Explain briefly what is the basic certification process (application, inspection, completion)?  The process consists of project registration, design review, pre-drywall inspection, final inspection, and certification.

2. Approximately how long does it take for a home to get certified?  The certification process has no significant effect on the construction schedule.  EarthCraft administrators take no more than 10 business days to pass/fail pre-drywall and final submittals.  Once the final submittal has been accepted by EarthCraft, an EarthCraft certificate is awarded.

3. What is the cost for a single family home?  According to data gathered by EarthCraft and LEED experts, green construction costs are only 1.6% to 2.4% more expensive than conventional construction.

4. What makes you different from other certifications?  EarthCraft focuses on the climate conditions of the South East.  Each project must use a certified EarthCraft Builder and certified EarthCraft Technical Advisor.

5. Do you focus primarily on energy efficiency or multiple elements for certification?  Energy efficiency, indoor air quality, durability, and resource efficiency.

6. Approximately how many certifications have been completed?  Over 40,000 EarthCraft certifications have been awarded (including multifamily units).

7. Please describe the region you cover, if not national.  Southface’s EarthCraft team serves the South East region.  Viridiant provides EarthCraft services for the Mid-Atlantic region.

8. Are renovations/remodels eligible for certification, or is it primarily new construction?
EarthCraft has separate Guidelines and Worksheets for single-family, multi-family, sustainable preservation (residential and commercial), communities, and light commercial projects.  EarthCraft completes renovation projects for both single-family and multi-family projects.