Green Industry Articles

Green Home Guide: Online Tool for Consumers

The U.S. Green Building Council's (USGBC) Green Home Guide is a new tool you can use to better connect with consumers, put yourself at the center of green conversations, and share your green knowledge.

According to Nate Kredich, USGBC's vice president of residential market development, the Green Home Guide is built simply and offers consumers a way to find relevant green home information.

Kredich and Matt Libby, manager of residential alliances for USGBC, presented a walk-through and highlights of the site during GRC's June 2010 Webinar.

The free site is divided into four parts:

1. Know-how: This section, a starting point for consumers, offers green basics, such as articles and tips written by green experts. Topics range from choosing kitchen countertops and low-flow toilets, to getting optimal performance from tankless water heaters.

2. Ask a Pro: Allows consumers to ask detailed green home questions that are answered by experts. Recent topics included a discussion about re-roofing a sloped roof and a question about using a solenoid valve.

3. Find a Pro: Helps site users locate professionals in their local markets. Categories include REALTORS®, architects, electricians, landscapers, and roofers.

4. Residential Programs: Informs users about the national, regional and local green home education and certification programs, including LEED for Homes and Green Built Texas.

The site also includes sections with a local spin for six cities--Dallas, San Diego, San Francisco, New York, Washington, D.C., and Raleigh. Additional cities are scheduled to come online soon.

The site allows professionals, including REALTORS®, to participate in numerous ways. Three key ways are:

1. Profiles: Build a profile simply by signing up and building a profile with your name, image and contact information.

2. Answer questions: Consumers pose questions and you answer them. It builds your credibility and you can share your knowledge and distinguish yourself as a green expert.

3. Showcase listings: Though everything else at the site is free, you can enhance your profile with images, for example. The monthly fee is $80.

"One benefit of getting involved in is the marketing alignment. The people we're trying to reach are those you're trying to reach," commented Kredich. "We have this never-ending queue of consumer questions that might be right in your sweet spot, and it's an opportunity to connect in a way that is different, but meaningful."

And at the other end of the question is a potential client.

Green REsource Council Newsletter, June 2010