Article by:
Austin Young
January 21, 2022
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What is a LEED Score, and how can you raise it?

LEED certifications are a great way to prove to your current and future tenants that you are serious about providing a safe, energy-efficient housing experience. Not only does it help save tenants money on utility bills, but it also attracts tenants to your property, helping lower vacancies and fill units.

Living in an environmentally friendly home is beneficial to both your tenant's health and the health of the planet. The U.S Green Building Council created a certification program called LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design). It is the most widely used green building rating system in the world. Available for virtually all building types, LEED provides a framework for healthy, highly efficient, and cost-saving green buildings. It enables your building to receive an energy rating based on its energy efficiency, water conservation, indoor air quality, and materials used in construction.

Here are simple ways to instantly improve your property's LEED score:

Opt for Energy Efficient Appliances

By investing in energy-efficient appliances, you are lowering the carbon footprint of your building as well as reducing utility bills for your tenants. To gain LEED points:

  1. Ensure that you use dishwashers with an Energy Star rating, along with energy-efficient washers and dryers. You can also increase points by using gas stoves or induction ranges instead of electric ones.
  2. Look for an Energy Star certified model that uses less electricity.
  3. Don’t forget about lighting; installing Energy Star qualified fluorescent lamps throughout your units will save money on electric bills while boosting LEED scores.

Improve the Insulation of your Property

You can raise your LEED score by strategically adding insulation into walls and ceilings, as well as wrapping ducts. This reduces energy loss and can save money on utility bills each month. Insulating is one of the most cost-effective ways to increase a property's LEED score. There are many home improvement options for increasing its insulating quality – from sealing air leaks to adding insulating layers between walls – so be sure to consult a contractor on what makes the most sense for your property.

Opting for Renewable Sources of Energy

Another way property owners can lower their tenant energy bills and boost their LEED score is by installing onsite solar panels that benefit tenant units and common areas. Investing in renewable energy will reduce your building's carbon footprint while simultaneously boosting your LEED score. Until now, it was challenging for property owners to install solar and make them pencil out financially. Thanks to Virtual Grid by Ivy Energy, it makes solar much more feasable and can help you create a new net operating income (NOI) by selling solar energy to your tenants. The Ivy Virtual Grid billing platform lets real estate owners become onsite solar energy hosts by offering intelligent, clean energy billing to their tenants. The first innovative billing solution of its kind that allows owners to generate a new income per unit while also guaranteeing monthly savings to tenants. Ivy Virtual Grid eliminates the complexities of distributing and billing solar energy across multiple units, ensuring a return on your solar investment. 

Onsite Generation allows for direct Benefits to Tenants

Virtual Net Metering (VNM) allows multi-tenant building owners to install a single solar system onsite to cover the electricity load of both common and tenant areas connected at the same service delivery point. The electricity does not flow directly to any tenant meter, but instead feeds directly back onto the grid. The participating utility then allocates the kilowatt hours from the energy produced by the solar PV generating system to both the building owner's and tenants' individual utility accounts, based on a pre-arranged allocation agreement. The idea behind VNM is to help tenants receive the direct benefits of the building's solar system, rather than all of the benefits only going to the building owner.

What value does your LEED performance score hold? It helps you:

  • Understand your carbon footprint.
  • Attracts new tenants 
  • Reduce Costs
  • Stand out amongst your competitors 
  • Enhance your building’s Reputation 

Get started today 

Every human being on the planet should have safe and healthy places to live, work, learn and play. Leading long and healthy lives is not a privilege, it’s a right for everyone. Shouldn’t the places where we spend 90% of our time support our health and wellbeing? Improved health and productivity benefits play a larger role than ever before in driving companies to invest in green building. Get in touch with Ivy today on our website or on our direct line (858)682-3489 to learn more about how Ivy can help you improve your property’s LEED score while also adding a new revenue stream.