What is LEED for Homes?
The United States Green Building Council created LEED as a rating system for green building. Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) LEED for Homes applies this rating system to “green” homes. A green home uses less energy, water, and natural resources; creates less waste; and is healthier and more comfortable for the occupants. Benefits of a LEED home include lower energy and water bills; reduced greenhouse gas emissions; and less exposure to mold, mildew and other indoor toxins. The net cost of owning a LEED home is comparable to that of owning a conventional home.
The LEED-H rating system has eight categories:
- Innovation and Design Process – any trait
of the design that goes above and beyond the
following categories can be considered an innovative
- Location and Linkages – Building in a
densely populated area with access to mass transit
is better than building in an undeveloped area that
only allows the use of private automobile
- Sustainable Sites – Minimizing the impact
of your home’s footprint on the land is beneficial
to the environment.
- Water Efficiency – Conserving water both
indoor and outdoor of the home is a good green
- Energy and Atmosphere – Improving the
home’s energy efficiency is not only good for the
environment, it’s good for your utility bills!
- Materials and Resources – Using materials
that are sustainable reduces the amount of materials
that are thrown into the landfills every year.
- Indoor Environmental Quality – Improving
your indoor air quality adds years to your home’s
life as well as your family’s.
- Awareness and Education – Educating the
homeowner on sustainable practices helps encourage
green building practices.
Barbara Buffaloe, Architectural Studies, College of Human Environmental Studies, University of Missouri-Columbia
Last update: Monday, May 18, 2009