Certification
NGBS Incentives Summary
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Beyond "doing the right thing." Check out these current incentives for NGBS Green Certified projects.

Summary of Current NGBS Incentives

The National Green Building Standard™ (ICC/ASHRAE 700) is approved by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) as an American National Standard. The NGBS provides criteria for rating the environmental impact of design and construction practices to achieve conformance with specified performance levels for green residential buildings. Federal agencies and local/state jurisdictions recognize the NGBS on par or superior to other residential green rating systems. Below is an alphabetical list by state of all known incentives for NGBS Green-certified projects. For your convenience, there is also a summary of available Qualified Allocation Plans.

ARIZONA, City of Phoenix – The optional Phoenix Green Construction Code provides additional density to multifamily buildings that are five stories or higher comply with the NGBS and meet a minimum Energy Efficiency Performance of Silver of higher that are built in specified areas.

ARKANSAS, City of Bentonville – In December 2009, the Bentonville City Council adopted the National Green Building Standard to serve as a guide for builders and developers who want to voluntarily participate in Home Innovation Research Labs’ NGBS Green certification program. The City of Bentonville was the first community in Arkansas to adopt the standard and serves as a model for other Arkansas cities.

ARKANSAS, City of Little Rock – The Building Codes Division provides financial incentives for green building projects up to $1,500 per project to cover certification costs to the National Green Building Standard.

CALIFORNIA – The California Tax Credit Allocation Committee’s Qualified Allocation Plan for Low Income Housing Tax Credits lists NGBS at a Silver or higher level as a minimum requirement alongside LEED, Passive House, Living Building Challenge or the GreenPoint Rated Program. A project may be awarded 5 points under Sustainable building methods for a new construction, adaptive reuse, or rehabilitation project.

COLORADO – The Colorado Housing and Finance Authority Qualified Allocation Plan for Low Income Housing Tax Credits recognizes the NGBS and LEED as alternatives to their mandatory Enterprise Green Communities requirement.

COLORADO, City of Cherry Hills Village – City offers the building permit rebates for homes that are NGBS Green Certified by Home innovation Research Labs in the following amounts: Bronze: 10%; Silver: 15%; Gold: 20%; Emerald: 25%.

COLORADO, City of Denver – The Green Building Ordinance requires new building and additions containing 25,000 sq ft or more of gross floor area and existing buildings containing 25,000 sq ft or more of gross floor area upon installing a new roof or roof replacement to comply by installing cool roofs and following one or more of the available pathways. Under the Certification path, new buildings must either NGBS Green (at Gold level), LEED New Construction (at Gold level), or Enterprise Green Communities. Existing building must achieve NGBS Green (at Silver level), LEED New Construction, Enterprise Green Communities, or equivalent. More information on the Green Building Requirement can be found here.

COLORADO, City of Fort Collins – Effective January 2012, the City Council inserted significant portions of the NGBS as part of the residential building code for new residential development.

COLORADO, City of Longmont – The City of Longmont adopted the National Green Building Standard as the building code for the city.

CONNECTICUT – The Connecticut Housing Finance Authority’s Multifamily Design, Construction and Sustainability Standard incorporates many elements of national and regional green residential rating systems, including the National Green Building Standard (NGBS).

CONNECTICUT – The Energize Connecticut Residential New Construction program provides rebates for residential new construction and significant rehabilitation projects. Rebates are primarily assessed based on HERS score (minimum of 60), and bonus incentives are available when high-performance certifications are pursued. NGBS Green Silver level certification is one option for the bonus incentive, recognized alongside ENERGY STAR, DOE Zero Energy Ready, LEED for Homes, and Passive House. For more information, see the website and application.

DELAWARE – The Delaware State Housing Authority’s Qualified Allocation Plan for Low-Income Housing Tax Credits awards up to 5 points for NGBS, or LEED, or Enterprise Green Communities. 3 points are available for NGBS Green Certification, and 5 points are available for NGBS Green Certification with a HERS Index rating of 75 or less (only available for acquisitions/rehabilitations).

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA – All commercial and large multifamily developments (4 stories and higher) must meet the DC Construction Code, which includes NGBS compliance as an acceptable method to meet the ordinance’s requirements.

FLORIDA, City of Lake Worth – The City’s Sustainable Bonus Incentive Program allows developers to attain increased height or increase intensity (FAR) within certain zoning districts in exchange for incorporating sustainable design features. NGBS Green Certification is recognized in alongside LEED and Florida Green Building as acceptable third-party certifications for the bonus program.

FLORIDA, City of Miami – Silver-level NGBS Green Certification has been deemed to be equivalent to LEED 2009 version 3, Silver level certification and an accessible rating system to comply with the sustainability requirements of the Miami 21 code.

FLORIDA, City of Pensacola – The city recognizes NGBS certification alongside LEED-H, and the FGBC for residential projects that are owned, funded, or sponsored by the city. They also support NGBS for neighborhood developments and for additions and renovations of existing homes. Incentives also include expedited green building permits and a 25 percent density bonus.

FLORIDA, Miami-Dade County – Miami-Dade County will expedite all building permits for green buildings certified by Home Innovation Research Labs, the USGBC, and the Florida Green Building Coalition.

FLORIDA, Town of Cutler Bay – NGBS Green Certification is deemed equivalent to LEED for the purposes of complying with Sec 3-74 Green Building Program Designation of the municipal code. Projects achieving silver-level NGBS Green certification may be eligible for up to 15% increase in floor area, additional “bonus” height, reduction in parking, expedited site and building plan review, expedited building inspections, 20% reduction of site plan review fee, and award granted by the town.

FLORIDA, Volusia County – County offers expedited permitting, public recognition, and rebate of 50% of application fees ($600 value) for NGBS, LEED, Green Globes, and Florida Green Building Coalition.

GEORGIA – Effective January 1, 2011, Georgia adopted the National Green Building Standard with 2011 Georgia Amendments as a permissive (optional) statewide code. The code applies to detached one- and two-family dwellings and multiple single-family dwellings (townhouses) as prescribed in the International Residential Code. It is available for local government adoption and enforcement. Local governments choosing to enforce any permissive codes must adopt the code(s) they wish to enforce, as well as administrative procedures and penalties.

GEORGIA, Qualified Allocation Plan – The Georgia Department of Community Affairs Qualified Allocation Plan for Low Income Housing Tax Credits requires green certification to the NGBS, LEED for Homes, EarthCraft, or Enterprise Green Communities.

GEORGIA, City of Decatur – NGBS Green Certified buildings at the Silver level or higher meet the City of Decatur’s High Performance Building Standards. NGBS is recognized alongside LEED, EarthCraft, and Green Globes.

HAWAII – Hawaii passed legislation that requires each county agency that issues building permits, construction, or development-related permits to establish a procedure for priority processing of permit applications that incorporate energy and environmental building standards and earn at least a silver rating.

HAWAII, Qualified Allocation Plan – The Hawaii Housing Finance & Development Corporation Qualified Allocation Plan for Low Income Housing Tax Credits awards up to 4 points for NGBS, LEED, or Enterprise Green Communities certifications. NGBS Points awarded are: 1 point for Bronze; 2 points for Silver; 3 points for Gold; and 4 points for Emerald.

IDAHO The Idaho Housing and Finance Association Qualified Allocation Plan for Low-Income Housing Tax Credits awards 8 points for a NGBS, ENERGY STAR, LEED, Enterprise, Indoor airPLUS, and Passive House Certification in their QAP.

IDAHO, City of Moscow – The city offers builders an option to be certified to the National Green Building Standard, and any home that achieves the Gold certification level or higher receives a medallion to affix to the home.

IDAHO, Ketchum – On May 7, 2012, the Ketchum City Council adopted the National Green Building Standard as their green building code. As an alternative to City certification of compliance with the NGBS (ICC700-2008), the City of Ketchum will accept NGBS Silver certification, verified by a Home Innovation Research Labs verifier.

ILLINOIS – The Illinois Housing Development Authority Qualified Allocation Plan for Low Income Housing Tax Credits awards 3 points for NGBS, Enterprise, LEED, or Passive House certifications.

INDIANA – The Indiana Housing & Community Development Authority Qualified Allocation Plan for Low Income Housing Tax Credits requires that newly-constructed buildings be in compliance with NGBS, Enterprise Green Communities, LEED, or equivalent ANSI-approved rating system.

LOUISIANA  The Louisiana Housing Corporation Qualified Allocation Plan for Low-Income Housing Tax Credits requires that all newly-constructed projects be in compliance with NGBS, LEED, Enterprise Green Communities, or EarthCraft.

MARYLAND – In April 2011, Governor O’Malley signed HB 630 which expands the definition of High Performance Homes to include those certified as Silver, Gold, or Emerald under the NGBS, as well as homes certified as Silver, Gold, or Platinum under the LEED for Homes rating system.

MARYLAND, Qualified Allocation Plan – The Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development’s Qualified Allocation Plan for Low-Income Housing Tax Credits awards 12 points for projects that are certified to NGBS, EarthCraft, Enterprise Green Communities, Green Globes, International Living Future Institute Net Zero, LEED, or PHIUS+. Ten optional points are available to projects that meet the requirements of those green building standards but do not seek certification.

MARYLAND, Anne Arundel County – Five year tax credit for new and renovated buildings NGBS-certified at the following rates: 40%, not to exceed $1,000 at the Silver level; 60%, not to exceed $3,000 at the Gold level; and 80% not to exceed $3,000 at the Emerald level.

MARYLAND, Baltimore County – In October 2013, Baltimore County revised its Tax Credit for High-Performance Buildings. Under this new policy, five-year tax credits for NGBS Green Certified multifamily buildings have been increased and extended as follows: 50% for Silver Level; 60% for Gold; 80% for Emerald.

MARYLAND, City of Annapolis – Single family homes over 3,250 sf must meet the National Green Building Standard (NGBS) bronze-level rating, LEED certified-level rating, or equivalent standard.

MARYLAND, City of Baltimore – 10 year tax credit for NGBS Green Certified (Silver) market-rate rental housing citywide at the following rates: 80% in years 1-5, 70% year 6, 60% year 7, 50% year 8, 40% year 9, 30% year 10.

MARYLAND, City of Baltimore – all commercial and large multifamily developments (4 stories and higher) must meet the Baltimore City Green Construction Code, which includes NGBS compliance as an acceptable method to meet the ordinance’s requirements.

MARYLAND, City of Frederick – To encourage the construction of energy efficient and sustainable building, the City of Frederick provides a High Performance Building Tax Credit for NGBS Green certified buildings (determined to be acceptable for the program). For additional information and to apply for the credit, contact the City Planning Department at 301.600.1499. Download Application (PDF).

MARYLAND, City of Gaithersburg – City Ordinance requires that one- and two-family dwellings and townhomes meet specified green building requirements, including compliance with the 2012 IECC and satisfaction of “Bronze” level requirements of Chapters 6 and 9 of the 2012 NGBS. High-rise residential buildings must comply with 2018 IgCC provisions.

MARYLAND, City of Rockville – The City Code requires that all low-rise residential buildings comply with the NGBS at the Silver level of higher. Multifamily buildings and the residential portions of mixed-used buildings must comply with NGBS or the IgCC provision adopted by the jurisdiction.

MARYLAND, Howard County – Sliding-scale tax credit up to $5,000 per year for up to four years for buildings certified at the Silver level or higher.

MICHIGAN – The Michigan State Housing Development Authority Qualified Allocation Plan for Low Income Housing Tax Credits requires compliance with NGBS LEED, Enterprise Green Communities, or the agency’s prescriptive criteria.

MISSISSIPPI – The Mississippi Home Corporation Qualified Allocation Plan for Low-Income Housing Tax Credits requires all new construction and rehabilitation projects be in compliance with the Bronze level of the NGBS. 7 points are available for Silver level compliance.

MISSOURI – In the Missouri Housing Development Commission Qualified Allocation Plan for Low-Income Housing Tax Credits, projects must be in compliance with the NGBS, Enterprise Green Communities, or LEED.

NEW HAMPSHIRE – In the New Hampshire Housing Finance Authority Qualified Allocation Plan for Low Income Housing Tax Credits awards 2 additional points for projects achieving a NGBS Gold certification, LEED Gold, or Enterprise Green Communities certification. Projects certified as Passive House or The Institute for Living Futures Net Zero are eligible to receive 5 points.

NEW HAMPSHIRE, City of Keene – The NGBS is an “Allowable Green Building System” in the city’s Sustainable Energy Efficient Development zone, a voluntary urban incentive-based area that promotes green building and redevelopment in its downtown.

NEW JERSEY – The New Jersey Urban Transit Hub Tax Credit Program (UTHTC) provides a tax credit for residential projects for up to 35% of total eligible costs. Urban Transit Hubs are located within ½ mile of New Jersey Transit, PATH, PATCO, or light rail stations in Camden (expanded to one mile), East Orange, Elizabeth, Hoboken, Jersey City, Newark, New Brunswick, Paterson, and Trenton. Currently, the UTHTC requires buildings to meet the NJ Green Building Manual; however, since the Manual has not yet been adopted buildings must comply with the State’s Green Guidelines. Both the Interim Green Guidelines and the draft NJ Green Building Manual includes compliance with ICC 700 NGBS as a compliance method.

NEW JERSEY, New Jersey Economic Development Authority – The New Jersey Economic Development Authority recognizes the National Green Building Standard ICC 700 (NGBS) as an acceptable green building standard for residential projects receiving financial assistance under the Economic Redevelopment and Growth (ERG) Program. Residential projects are eligible for a tax credit of up to 20% of total project cost with 10% bonus possible if the project constructs and reserves at least 10% of the residential units for moderate income housing.

NEW JERSEY, Qualified Allocation Plan – The New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency Qualified Allocation Plan for Low-Income Housing Tax Credits awards 3 points for NGBS, LEED, or Enterprise Green Communities certification.

NEW YORK, Green Building Grant Program – Between 2009 and 2012, New York offered generous financial incentives to new home construction (single-family and multifamily up to 12 units) and substantial renovations that were built and certified to either the NGBS or LEED for Homes. Program was discontinued May 2012.

NEW YORK, Green Building Tax Exemption – On July 18, 2012 Governor Cuomo signed into law authorization for a municipal corporation to provide a tax exemption for improvements to property started after January 1, 2013 and which meet green certification standards. The state law provides authorization for the local jurisdiction to take action. Local law may specify a later date. Buildings certified as in compliance with ANSI-approved ICC 700 National Green Building Standard are eligible. The property tax exemption is only available if the improvement increases the assessed value of the real property. To qualify, the value of the improvement must exceed $10,000. Ordinary maintenance and repair projects do not qualify as eligible improvement projects; however, significant renovation or remodeling do qualify.

Eligible properties must be certified at the Bronze, Silver, Gold, or Emerald level as determined by the certification body. For a residential or mixed-use building certified as NGBS-compliant, the exemptions are equal to 100% of the increase in assessed value as a result of the improvement in the first year. The exemption is gradually phased out over 10 years, with 20% exempted for Emerald buildings in year 10 and no exemption in year 10 for Bronze, Silver and Gold buildings.

NEW YORK, Qualified Allocation Plan  The current New York State Low-Income Housing Tax credit - Multifamily Programs Unified Funding awards 3 points to new construction or renovation projects that achieve Silver level certification, or higher, to the NGBS.

NEW YORK, Niagara County – 10-year graduated tax exemption for NGBS Green Certified remodels.

NEW YORK, Town of Islip – Density bonus for NGBS-certified single-family and multifamily homes as follows: 1 additional unit per acre above base permitted density for NGBS Bronze certified projects; 2 additional units for NGBS Silver; and 3 additional units for NGBS Gold.

NORTH CAROLINA The North Carolina Housing Finance Agency Community Partners Loan Pool awards a $1,000 financial incentive to participating local governments and non-profits who obtain NGBS, LEED for Homes, or Enterprise Green Communities certification.

NORTH CAROLINA, Catawba County – Catawba County provides a 25% rebate of the blanket permit fee, not to exceed $500, for new homes certified to the NGBS.

NORTH CAROLINA, Chatham County – Until the local green building program was retired, the county provided a $250 rebate on permitting fees for building certified to the NGBS.

NORTH CAROLINA, Pinehurst Village – In July 2012, the Pinehurst Village Council approved improvements to the Green Building Incentive Program which rewards builders and homeowners that make an effort toward building green. Incentives will be given in the form of permit rebates at the conclusion of the project. Also, signage and other methods of recognition may be given to those building to a green standard. Once a builder or homeowner constructs a new home or remodeling project through a certified green building program including Home Innovation Research Labs’ National Green Building Standard certification they are eligible to receive a partial rebate of their initial permit fee. The program now allows a scale of 50-90% rebate of the building permit fees that meet one of the above-mentioned programs.

NORTH DAKOTA – North Dakota Housing Finance Agency Qualified Allocation Plan for Low Income Housing Tax Credits recognizes NGBS, LEED, and Enterprise Green Communities certification and awards a developer up to 7 optional points.

OHIO The Ohio Housing Finance Agency Qualified Allocation Plan for Low Income Housing Tax Credits recognizes NGBS Green, LEED, and Enterprise Green Communities certification for 5 points.

PENNSYLVANIA – In Pennsylvania, the High Performance Building Program provides financial assistance in the form of grant or loan funds for eligible applicants to underwrite the cost premiums associated with the design and construction or major renovation of high performance buildings in the state. Eligible residential projects must meet the criteria of NGBS, LEED, or Green Globes, with a few additional requirements that were specified by the State of Pennsylvania. Loans are available up to $10,000 and grants up to $500,000.

PENNSYLVANIA – The Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency Qualified Allocation Plan for Low Income Housing Tax Credits recognizes the NGBS Silver, LEED Silver, and Enterprise Green Communities certifications for 10 points for newly-constructed buildings. For preservation developments, NGBS Bronze, LEED Certified, and Enterprise Green Communities earn 10 points.

SOUTH CAROLINA, Qualified Allocation Plan – The South Carolina State Housing Finance and Development Authority’s Qualified Allocation Plan awards 5 points for NGBS, LEED for Homes, Enterprise Green Communities, or EarthCraft certification.

SOUTH CAROLINA, City of Columbia – The Green Building Incentive Program provides financial and other incentives for residential buildings certified to the National Green Building Standard, LEED for Homes, Earth Craft, Build Green Greater Columbia, or HealthyBuilt Homes. The amount of the incentive varies with the project’s cost and the level of green certification.

TENNESSEE, City of Nashville – The Nashville Codes Department offers a green building permit to recognize projects that “demonstrate responsible, quality construction with respect to energy efficiency, environmental impact, and reductions in the use of shared municipal resources.” Applicants for a green building permit receive expedited processing as long as they include documentation of their intent to be certified to the National Green Building Standard. After construction is completed and inspected, applicants receive a green use and occupancy certificate.

TEXAS – The Texas Department of Housing & Community Affairs Qualified Allocation Plan for Low-Income Housing Tax Credits awards up to 4 points for NGBS, LEED, and Enterprise Green Communities certification.

TEXAS, City of Dallas – Effective October 1, 2013, all residential development must meet the Dallas Green Building Ordinance which includes NGBS compliance as an acceptable method to meet the ordinance’s requirements.

UTAH – The Utah Housing Corporation Qualified Allocation Plan for Low Income Housing Tax Credits allows projects to select NGBS or LEED compliance as an alternative to the Enterprise Green Communities requirement.

VERMONT, Town of Hinesburg – Homes that are NGBS Green Certified are eligible to receive a density bonus of up to 2% above the base residential density.

VIRGIN ISLANDS (U.S.) – The U.S. Virgin Islands Qualified Allocation Plan for Low-Income Housing Tax Credits recognizes NGBS, LEED, Enterprise Green Communities, and ENERGY STAR certification. Under Energy Efficiency, up to 10 points may be awarded, with 9 points for NGBS Bronze and 10 points for Silver and above.

VIRGINIA – The Virginia Housing Development Authority Qualified Allocation Plan for Low Income Housing Tax Credits awards 10 points for developments meeting NGBS Green Certification, LEED, Earth Craft, or Enterprise Green Communities.

WASHINGTON – Washington’s State Housing Finance Commission recognizes NGBS Green certification (Silver level and higher) as one option for meeting the requirements for the Energy Spark Home Loan program, which provides a .25 interest rate reduction for qualifying buyers of energy-efficient homes.

WASHINGTON, City of Vancouver – In 2015, Vancouver adopted the NGBS as the City’s voluntary green building code.

WASHINGTON, Clark County – In 2010, Clark County adopted the NGBS as the county’s voluntary green building code. The code applies to the unincorporated areas of Clark County and the interlaying cities and towns. Learn more here.

FEDERAL AGENCIES

Fannie Mae Green Incentives & Tools – Fannie Mae recently announced additional green loan incentives, a free Energy and Water Audit, and access to even more loan proceeds.

  • Will now reimburse 100% of the cost of the High-Performance Building (HPB) Report when the loan is delivered as a Green Rewards loan. An ASHRAE Level 2-compliant Energy and Water Audit Report is required.
  • Greater loan proceeds available by allowing deals to underwrite 75% of the owner's and 25% of the tenants' projected energy and water cost savings. Previously Fannie allowed up to 50% of the combined owner's and tenants' savings.
  • Green Building Certifications recognized and approved by Fannie Mae (Form 4250 Green Building Certifications).

Freddie Mac Single-Family Green Home Mortgage Guidance – Freddie Mac has provided additional guidance to lenders in support of green home financing. The new guidance will:

  • Identify property eligibility requirements for mortgages on homes with solar panels
  • Establish underwriting requirements to not count solar panel payments in the borrower's debt payment-to-income ratio
  • Update the appraisal requirements for the valuation for high-performing energy-efficient properties

Changes take effect on mortgages dated after March 1, 2017. Information on the Selling Guide is available online.

HUD Choice Neighborhoods Implementation Grant Program – The Choice Neighborhoods program supports locally driven strategies to address struggling neighborhoods with distressed public or HUD-assisted housing through a comprehensive approach to neighborhood transformation. Awards of up to $30 million are available to communities under this program. Choice Neighborhoods Planning Grants are available to support the development of comprehensive neighborhood revitalization plans which focused on directing resources to address three core goals: Housing, People and Neighborhoods. Choice Neighborhoods Implementation Grants support those communities that have undergone a comprehensive local planning process and are ready to implement their “Transformation Plan” to redevelop the neighborhood. The 2016 Program Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA) encourages the use of NGBS Green for new construction or substantial rehabilitation proposed as part of the community plans.

USDA Rural Development, Multifamily Housing Energy Efficiency Initiative – applicants to several Rural Rental Housing, Farm Labor Housing, Housing Preservation Grants, and Multifamily Housing Revitalization grants and loans are eligible to receive additional points for new construction and rehabilitation projects that are certified to the NGBS, LEED for Homes, Enterprise Green Communities, and/or Energy Star. Points awarded for each certification obtained, and more points will be awarded for higher certification levels. See more at https://www.energy.gov/eere/solarpoweringamerica/rural-development-multi-family-housing-energy-efficiency-initiative.

HUD & USDA Energy Efficiency Standards  The NGBS is a recognized alternative compliance path for demonstrating that HUD- or USDA-housing meets the agencies’ energy efficiency standards (2009 IECC for single-family homes, ASHRAE 90.1 for multifamily buildings). See more at www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2015-05-06/pdf/2015-10380.pdf.

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