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LEED ID - Innovation and Design

Innovation and Design points encourages implementing strategies not address in the typical LEED for Homes rating system

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The Innovation and Design process encourages the project team to improve the requirements of the current LEED for home rating system by earning points in innovative design ideas, exemplary performance or regional best practices that can be shown to improve environmental and health benefits to the homes' occupants and workers.

Green homebuilding strategies and techniques are most effectively implemented as part of an integrated design process, with input from individuals involved in each phase of the project. Good design can keep costs down and ensure proper integration of green techniques and achievement of project goals.

Refer to the tabbed credits below for the intent, credits, prerequisites, approach, calculations, submittals and resources required for each LEED credit.

Total Points Available = 10

Minimum Points Needed = 0

  • ID 1
  • ID 2
  • ID 3

Integrated Project Planning: (4 points max.) LEED ID 1 Intent: Maximize opportunities for integrated, cost-effective adoption of green design and construction strategies. Prerequisites: Preliminary Rating (Prerequisite) LEED ID 1.1

As early as practical, conduct a preliminary LEED for Homes meeting, with the participation of the Provider and key members of the project team. As part of the meeting, create an action plan that identifies the following:

    The targeted LEED award level (Certified, Silver, Gold, or Platinum)
    The LEED for Homes credits that have been selected to meet the targeted award level
    The party accountable for meeting the LEED for Homes requirements for each selected credit.
Credits: Integrated Project Team (1) Point: LEED ID 1.2

Assemble project team members as soon as possible to meet the following (3) criteria:

Include team members incl. Green Rater other members incl.:

    Architectural Designer
    Mechanical Engineer or Energy Designer
    Performance Tester
    Green Building & Sustainable Design
    Civil, Landscape, Habitat or Land-use Planner

Actively Involve all team members in:

    Schematic Design Process
    LEED Planning
    Preliminary Design
    Energy Envelope Analysis
    Design Development
    Final Design

Monthly meeting with project team to review status, goals, problems and next steps.

Professional Credentialed in LEED for Homes (1 Point) LEED ID 1.3

At least one principal member of the project team shall be a professional who is credentialed with aspect to LEED for Homes as determined by the U.S. Green Building Council. Design Charrette: (1) Point LEED ID 1.4

No later than the Design Development phase and preferably during Schematic Design, conduct at least one full-day integrated design workshop with the project team defined in ID 1.2. Use the workshop to integrate green strategies across all aspects of the building design, drawing on the experience of all participants.

Overview: LEED ID 1.1 - 1.4:

Green experts agree that the most successful green projects are those where the experts collaborate early in the design process. Even conventional designs can greatly benefit from the integrated project planning that is set forth below and is encourage by the LEED for Homes program. These credit are intended to encourage project integration and collaborate between project team members as early as possible in the process. Approach: LEED ID 1.1 - 1.4

    Initiate integrated project planning and integrated design as early as possible
    During the preliminary rating, set specific goals for the project, including certification goals
    Once goals have been set, earn approximately 5 points about the goal threshold
    The integrated team may include members outside the list provided in LEED ID 1.2
    With approval of Provider and Green Rater, a project team may conduct multiple 1/2 day charrettes
Calculations: LEED ID 1.1 - 1.4:


Exemplary Performance: LEED ID 1.1 - 1.4:


Verification and Submittals: LEED ID 1.1 - 1.4:

Builder/Project Team: LEED ID 1.2: Present a list of project team members to the Green Rater. Present list of meeting dates or plans for regularly scheduled meeting to the Green Rater. LEED ID 1.3: Identify the Professional Credentialed with Respect to LEED for Homes to the Green Rater. LEED ID 1.4: Present information about the charrette to the Green Rater.

Green Rater: LEED ID 1.1: Participate in Preliminary LEED for Homes rating, or verify participation by the LEED for Homes Provider. LEED ID 1.2: Visually verify the list of project team members and meeting dates. LEED ID 1.3: Verify participation of a Professional Credentialed with Respect to LEED for Homes on the project team. LEED ID 1.4: Participate in the charrette, or verify participation by the LEED for Homes Provider.

Resources: LEED 1.1 - 1.4:
    US Department of Energy: Integrated Building Design for Energy Efficiency
    Whole Building Design Guide
Building Orientation for Solar Design (1 Point) LEED ID 1.5

Design a home meeting the following requirements:

    N/S facing glazing 50%> E/W Glazing
    E/W axis of building is within 15 degrees of due E/W
    Roof > 450 s.f. south-facing area
    >90% south-facing glass is shaded
Overview: LEED ID 1.5:

Successful solar design for a new home is paramount on the siting and orientation of the new home. It is essential that all passive and active systems are analyzed during or prior to home placement. Plan orientation, window placements, roof shapes and orientation to the sun, shading designs and cooling opportunities for the natural ventilation.

Approach: LEED ID 1.5:

Choose site location and orientation as soon as possible in the design process.

Where possible and appropriate, plant deciduous trees for shading in the summer, but allowing sun to penetrate in the winter months, when the leaves are shed off the trees.

Investigate shading by overhand analysis, vegetation or window blinds.

Projects planning to adopt additional passive solar design elements should use the performance pathway in the LEED Energy and Atmosphere category. Optimal passive solar techniques vary based on the location, climate, and specific design of the home.

Investigate Energy Modeling for it's critical feedback in the analysis phase of a project.


Four Calculations are required for this credit:

Calculate the ratio of glazing area on the north and south-facing walls to the glazing area on the east and west-facing walls.

Calculate the precise orientation of the home. Using a compass, detailed map, GIS calculations, or an alternative method, demonstrate that the east-west axis of the building is within 15 degrees of due east-west.

Calculate the area of the roof that is south facing. Flat roof area can be included in this calculation.

Provide simulation date on calculations to demonstrate that at least 90% of all south-facing glazing area is unshaded at noon on December 21 and completely shaded at noon on June 21. Information about tools for conducting this calculation can be found under the Resources area below.

Exemplary Performance:


Verification and Submittals:

Builder/Project Team: Present any calculations or simulation results to the Green Rater.

Green Rater: Visually verify that calculations or simulations were performed to meet the credit requirements.

    US Department of Energy: Building Technologies Program
    Building Energy Software Tools Directory
    Sustainable by Design, Overhand DesignTool
    Florida Solar Energy Center
Synergies and Trade-Offs:

This credit is intended to promote an integrated, system-oriented approach to green project design and development. The selected green home-building strategies and technologies in the Rating System should each be fully integrated into a home's design.

Durability Management Process: LEED ID 2 Intent:

Promote durability and high performance of the building enclosure and its components and systems through appropriate design, materials selection, and construction practices.

Prerequisites: Durability Planning LEED ID 2.1

Note: USGBC and its representatives are responsible only for verifying the completion of LEED for Homes requirements; such verification in no way constitutes a warranty as to the appropriateness of the selected durability measures or the quality of implementation.

    Complete the Durability Risk Evaluation Form to identify all moderate and high-risk durability issues for the building enclosure.
    Develop specific measure to respond to those issues
    Identify and Incorporate applicable Indoor Moisture Control measures in the Moisture Control Measures Table.
    Hover HERE for Indoor Moisture Control Measures Table
    Incorporate above requirements in Contract Documents (drawings, specifications, and/or scope of work).
    List all the durability measures and indicate their locations in the project documents in a durability inspection checklist. Include the checklist in project documents for use in verification.
Durability Management LEED ID 2.2

During construction, the builder shall have a quality management process in place to ensure installation of the durability measures. This prerequisite can be satisfied by having the builder inspect and check off each measure in the durability inspection checklist.

Credits: Third-Party Verification Process (3 points) LEED ID 2.3

Have the Green Rater inspect and verify each measure listed in the durability inspection checklist created for 2.1


No matter what the age of the structure, all homes will suffer from moisture damage of some sort, whether for storm damage, water infiltration, or condensation. Builders who address these durability issues will have much less failure rate resulting in less call-back issues and homes lasting much longer between maintenance cycles. This credit emphasizes four basic elements of designing for durability:

    Evaluate the durability risks for a specific home in a specific site.
    Incorporate strategies into the home design to counteract the greatest long-term durability risks
Manage construction of the home to ensure that design strategies for durability are actually implemented during construction.

    Have a third party inspect the home to verify that design strategies for durability have been implemented during construction.

Even though these guidelines are followed, it does not guarantee a high-quality home, nor does it guarantee that failures or call-backs will not occur. This section is designed to give builders specific durability guidelines to follow at accesses the highest risk issues. Approach:

Durability management is designed to ensure that the highest risk durability issues for any home are addressed and it is important that these issues are addressed as early on in the design process as possible. If the design charrette is held as listed in LEED ID 1.3, address durability issues during that meeting. Complete and submit a Durability Evaluation Form. Seek assistance from consultants as early as possible. Rank each durability as low, medium or high.

Principal Durability Risks:

    Exterior Water
    Interior Moisture Loads
    Air Infiltration
    Interstitial Condensation
    Heat Loss
    Ultraviolet Radiation
    Natural Disasters

Once the evaluation has been completed, develop a list of measures and strategies to address the greatest durability risks. Include the risks indicated in the Indoor Moisture Control Measures Table.
Hover HERE for Indoor Moisture Control Measures Table.

Use the list of strategies as a checklist to facilitate inspections, and incorporate each strategy into project documents. A template version of the durability inspection checklist is available from your Provider. If a project team chooses not to use the template, include the following elements into the durability checklist:

    A signed and dated declaration that the builder has evaluated the project's durability risks, incorporated appropriate measures into the design, and inspected to verify that the durability measures were installed or implemented appropriately.
    Basic information about the project, including site address, builder's name and the third-party verifier to indicate that each measure was inspected and verified.

Because more builders are instituting their own quality management and risk management plans, they are assuring quality assurance through consistent performance across a company's operations, and emphasize in-field compliance with drawings, specifications and/or scopes of work. If the builder chooses not to use the quality management plan LEED ID 2.2, these requirements can be satisfied by the builders internal checklist system.

Third party verification of the durability measure is an optional credit. This verification should be conducted by the Green Rater and should consist of inspections and observations of each measure on the durability inspection checklist.



Exemplary Performance:


Verification and Submittals:

Builder/Project Team: LEED ID 2.1: Complete and submit the Durability Evaluation Form to the Green Rater. Include durability measures in project documents. Develop and submit a completed durability inspection checklist. LEED ID 2.2: Present documentation of quality management processes to the Green Rater or conduct an inspection of durability measures in the home and indicate the completion of the inspection on the durability inspection checklist.

Green Rater: LEED ID 2.1: Verify completion of the Durability Evaluation Form and durability inspection checklist. LEED ID 2.2: Visually verify documentation of quality management process or verify that the project team conducted onsite inspection of durability measures and indicated its completion on the durability inspection checklist. LEED ID 2.3: Visually verify that strategies listed on the durability inspection checklist were incorporated into the home. Upon verification, check off and sign the durability inspection checklist.


    ASTM E2136-01
    Building America Best Practice Handbooks
    Building For Environmental and Economic Sustainability
    Building Science Resources
    Canadian Standards Association: CSA S478-95; Guideline on Durability in Buildings
    Durability by Design: A Guide for Residential Builders
    Energy & Environmental Building Association, Houses that Work Series:
    Energy and Environmental Building Association: Builders' Guides
    Forest Products Laboratory, Advanced Housing Research Center
    National Economic Service-Life Tools
    National Housing Quality Certified Builder Program
    National Climatic Data Center's Climate Alas of the United States
    National Renewable Energy Laboratory Maps and Data
    Natural Resources Conservation Service Wind Maps
    Radon Zone Map
Synergies and Trade-Offs

Many of the Credits in the LEED for Homes Rating System can serve as durability strategies and may be used in the creation of a durability inspection checklist. If this is done, the home can still receive LEED points for those credits.

Table 1 Indoor Moisture Control Measures
Location or Equipment Required Moisture Control Measure
Tub, showers and spa areas Use non paper-faced backer board on walls
Kitchen, bathroom, laundry rooms Use water-resistant flooring; do not install carpet
Entryway within 3' of exterior doors Use water-resistant flooring; do not install carpet
Tank water heater in or over living Install drain and drain pan
Clothes washer in or over living space Install drain and drain pain or install supply valve that is accessible
Conventional clothes dryer Exhaust directly to outdoors
Condensing clothes dryer Install drain and drain pan
Innovative or Regional Design LEED ID 3 Intent:

Minimize the environmental impact of the home by incorporating additional green design and construction measures that have tangible and demonstrate benefits beyond those in the LEED for Home Rating System



Credits: Innovation 1 (1 Point) LEED ID 3.1

Provide written Innovative Design Request, to be submitted by the LEED for Homes Provide to USGBC, explaining the merits of the proposed measure. This point cannot be counted until LEED for Homes has ruled on the request. The submittal must contain:

    The intent of the proposed measure
    The proposed requirement for compliance
    The proposed documentation to demonstrate compliance
    A description and estimate of the benefit or impact of the proposed measure
Innovation 1 (1 Point) LEED ID 3.2 Innovation 1 (1 Point) LEED ID 3.3 Innovation 1 (1 Point) LEED ID 3.4 Approach:
    Exemplary performance. Exceeding the requirements of LEED for homes
    Innovative Design. Implementation of new technology or construction practice
    Regional Design. Address a regional or environmental health concern not already addressed
    Verification and Submittals
    Proposed Benefits.

May be required to demonstration cost and environmental benefits.

Exemplary Performance:

All exemplary performance points earned under other credits must be scored under this credit.


Building/Project Team: Notify LEED for Homes Provider asap about intent to submit an innovation request. Complete a formal innovative or regional request.

Green rater:Review the innovative or regional design request. Submit the request to USGBC for review. Provide feedback to the project team about the ruling.

Synergies and Trade-Offs

This credit rewards innovative or regional measures that are not addressed elsewhere in the Rating System. A project can also receive 1 LEED point for exceeding the performance requirements of existing credits.