Performance Standards: LEED® for Homes v4

LEED for Homes is an initiative designed to promote the transformation of home building practices toward more sustainability. LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design and is administered by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). The LEED Rating System recognizes buildings that meeting high standards in terms of durability, health, reduced environmental impact, and energy efficiency.

The LEED for Homes as with the other LEED programs, is a consensus-developed, third party-verified, voluntary rating system which promotes the design and construction of high-performance buildings. This rating system applies to single family homes, low-rise multi-family (1 to 3 stories), or mid-rise multi-family (4 to 6 stories).

Energy-efficient Windows in LEED Homes

LEED homes must qualify for a certain number of credit points in different resource categories (Energy and Atmosphere, Sustainable Sites, Materials and Resources). High-efficiency windows may achieve up to 3 points in the Energy and Atmosphere category. The baseline for this category are the minimum criteria for ENERGY STAR® qualified homes. By exceeding these criteria, a home receives LEED points.

Performance path: Gain points for a home energy rating score better than the minimum performance of an ENERGY STAR Home. Windows influence this score through variables such as U-factor, SHGC, orientation and window area.

Prescriptive path: Gain points for individual home features (insulation, windows, water heater, etc.) that exceed the performance levels for these features in the ENERGY STAR Homes program. Windows can contribute 1.5 or 3 points if their NFRC-rated energy performance values meet the following levels:

Source: LEED BD+C for Homes v4.

Note 1: In climate zones 4–8, homes with a WFA ratio of 15% or more must meet a more stringent U-factor requirement:
Maximum U-factor = [0.15 / WFA] x [relevant U-factor as shown in table above]

Note 2: In climate zones 1–3, homes with a WFA ratio of 15% or more must meet a more stringent solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC) requirement: Maximum SHGC = [0.15 / WFA] x [relevant SHGC as shown in table above]

Source: LEED BD+C for Homes v4.

Additional Window Credits
Additional points for windows are possible. To search for availability see the links below:

Energy & Atmosphere
Materials & Resources

LEED for Homes Green Rater Program

Green Raters play a critical role in the LEED for Homes process by providing the required onsite verification services on a project. Visit USGBC’s web site for more information.

Green Raters have the following responsibilities:

Provide on-site verification services on a LEED for Homes registered project
Assemble the Project Submittal Package and submit it for certification review

LEED for Homes Reference Guide
The LEED for Homes Reference Guide is the most comprehensive guide for the design, construction and renovation of residential projects. The guide is intended for use by homebuilders. See LEED Reference Guide for Homes Design and Construction for more information.

About Us

provides unbiased information and education to the public on the energy efficiency, technical, and human considerations that influence window selection and use. The EWC collaborates with allied organizations, educational institutions, and government agencies that promote energy efficiency in residential windows. We do not sell, service, install, or recommend products, or endorse manufacturers. Descriptions and specifications of the products in the Window Selection Tool are provided by the manufacturer. The EWC is not liable for any manufacturing defects or inaccurate product descriptions and specifications and does not guarantee the performance of NFRC-certified windows, doors, and skylights.

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