Home Innovation Insights

Heed the warnings the FTC has issued -- don't take chances with your green certification claims.

Michelle Foster
November 19, 2015

Don't Mess with FTC: Substantiate Your Green Marketing Claims

A growing number of consumers are interested in green products. Despite what naysayers insist, that is fact. Consider green cleaning products. In 2010, less than 20 percent of American consumers surveyed said they had bought a green cleaning product in the past year; now the figure is almost 30 percent, according to Scot Case of the Natural Marketing Institute. Not only is interest in green products growing, but more consumers will pay more for a green product. In 2009 only 15 percent of consumers surveyed said they would be prepared to pay up to 20 percent extra for a greener cleaning product; in 2014 the figure was 29 percent. While green products are certainly different than green homes, builders should take note of the trend.

At the same time, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is increasingly vigilant in keeping consumers safe from fraudulent and overzealous green claims. Several years ago the FTC released stringent and detailed guidance to marketers on what they could allege in the way of green claims. After allowing some time for marketers to make necessary adjustments to comply with their Green Guides, the FTC is now looking to enforce its rules.

Home Innovation’s NGBS Green certification program offers builders, remodelers, and developers a safe haven to offer up to consumers green, high performance homes and not run afoul of the FTC. NGBS Green is an independent, third-party green certification that was carefully crafted to provide value to builders and consumers alike. The NGBS Green certification mark is proof that a home meets the stringent criteria of the National Green Building Standard.

Few people are more expert than Suzanne Shelton when it comes to marketing green in the home building industry. Check out what Suzanne had to say recently about ensuring your green certifications are FTC-safe.

Interested in getting your next project NGBS Green Certified? Contact us.

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