Get globally recognized credentials for your project.

The USGBC LEED Certification is a globally recognized third-party endorsement of green building features in a project. Used by property buyers and tenants alike, the certification conveys an efficient and high performance building with lower running costs.

LEED certifications

Talk to a Specialist

Book a free 10-minute call.


What Is It


The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Certification is administered by the Green Business Certification Inc. (GBCI) whose parent body is the United States Green Building Council (USGBC). The GBCI is a Company (India, others) or a Technical Institute (US, others) depending on which country you are registering your project in where GBCI has a local presence. It is a for-profit entity in all instances that handles the project certification and personnel credentialing business. The USGBC by comparison is a 501(c)(3) non-profit based in Washington DC in the US. Both GBCI and USGBC share the same registered office and it can be said that while USGBC is a humanitarian organization, GBCI is the commercial entity. Together they are working towards green buildings for all within this generation.

A number of professionals are engaged with the USGBC in areas of policy advocacy, LEED technical committees, and other humanitarian activities such as relief work for earthquake victims in Haiti. The USGBC has a number of chapters across US and internationally that further the cause of green building while engaging students and professionals alike. GBCI is focused on increasing the footprint of green buildings through different rating systems such as LEED, ARC, SITES, TRUE, PEER, ICP, EDGE, WELL.

People desirous of obtaining professional credentials that demonstrate their familiarity with the respective certifications can appear for exams and earn credentials such as LEED Green Associate, LEED Accredited Professional (AP), WELL AP, SITES AP, City Climate Planner, Sustainability Excellence Associate, Sustainability Excellence Professional, LEED Green Rater, TRUE Advisor, EDGE Expert. 

Organizations can become members of USGBC as a Platinum, Gold, Silver, or Organizational Member. Individuals can become a Community Development and Individual Member. Each membership comes with different fee structures and benefits: for organizations, it primarily means increasing levels of discounts on LEED certification and other fees with higher membership cadres. 

If you would like to understand how to best partner with the green building movement and /or take up a membership with the USGBC, talk to a green building specialist and they can guide you on which level of engagement makes sense for your requirements and where you can reap the maximum benefits for your professional and community work. 

Get Global Brand Recognition

USGBC LEED is the world leader in green building certification. 

§ Global recognition
§ Credibility for Sales & Leasing
§ Third Party Certificate

Talk to a Green Building Specialist for a 10-minute free consultation. Explore if USGBC LEED Certification is the right fit for your project.

Certification Levels

A project can earn the following levels of certification from USGBC LEED:

  • Platinum: 80+ points earned
  • Gold: 60-79 points earned
  • Silver: 50-59 points earned
  • Certified: 40-49 points earned

The rating involves meeting the criteria set out as Prerequisites (Mandatory with no credit points) and Credits under different categories such as Integrative Process, Location and Transportation, Sustainable Sites, Water Efficiency, Energy and Atmosphere, Materials and Resources, Indoor Environmental Quality, Innovation, and Regional Priority. 

On a point scale of 100+ points, a project team demonstrates commitment to a certain number of credits and the corresponding credit points cumulatively determine the certification level for the project. Achievement of a certain number of points is dependent on the supporting documentation submitted such as drawings, calculations, analysis results, narratives, and so on that a green building specialist helps a project team to prepare.

Selecting a certain certification level is often tied to a government incentive (such as free FAR), a client requirement, or marketing goals. Achieving a higher certification level may not necessarily mean more cost, but if green building principles are not incorporated into the project early on, a higher certification level can mean higher cost. Consult a green building specialist to know more about the right certification level to aim for in your project.

The World of Green Building Certifications:

Different LEED Certifications

Selecting the right USGBC LEED Certification system depends on the project and team requirements. It is vital to make the right selection of rating system and certification approach as it directly impacts the certification fees payable and the process followed for certification. Below are the major USGBC LEED Certifications:

For new construction or major renovations. Includes New Construction and Core & Shell, and also includes applications for Schools, Retail, Hospitality, Data Centers, Warehouses & Distribution Centers and Healthcare.

For complete interior fit-out projects. Includes Commercial Interiors, and also includes applications for Retail and Hospitality.

For existing buildings that are undergoing improvement work or little to no construction. Includes Existing Buildings, and also includes applications for Schools, Retail, Hospitality, Data Centers, and Warehouses & Distribution Centers.

For new land development projects or redevelopment projects containing residential uses, nonresidential uses, or a mix. Projects can be at any stage of the development process, from conceptual planning to construction. Includes Plan and Built Project. 

For single family homes, low-rise multi-family (one to three stories) or mid-rise multi-family (four or more). Includes Homes, Multifamily Lowrise, Multifamily Midrise. Homes and residential buildings that are greater than four stories may also use LEED BD+C.

For entire cities and sub-sections of a city. LEED for Cities projects can measure and manage their city’s water consumption, energy use, waste, transportation and human experience. 

LEED recertification helps you maintain and improve your building while keeping your sustainability investment in place. Applies to all occupied and in-use projects that have previously achieved certification under LEED.

Available for all LEED projects certified under the BD+C or O+M rating systems or registered to pursue LEED O+M certification. LEED Zero is for projects with net zero goals in carbon and/or resources.

Each of the above ratings are detailed systems of credits and prerequisites. The certification process is equally complex. Consult a green building specialist to determine which rating system your project should adopt to reap the maximum benefit out of the certification without paying extra for the same brand. 

Talk to a Specialist

Book a free 10-minute call.

Registration and Certification Fees

There are many factors that determine the fees for a USGBC LEED Certification project. These include:

  • LEED Rating System selected
  • Certification Approach
  • Membership Level
  • Geographic location of the project

In the most common instance, project fee is based on different ranges of built-up area of the project. There can be a minimum and a maximum threshold applicable as well. All these rates vary as per the above mentioned criteria.

The overall certification project can additionally include fees for appealing the decision of the certifying body for the award or rejection of a credit that a project team applies for. 

Additional fees also becomes payable when a Credit Interpretation Request (CIR) is filed with the USGBC in case a project has unique circumstances that are not typically covered in the literature provided and additional clarifications are requested from USGBC. 

Some other approaches due to which significantly additional or reduced fees becomes applicable includes:

  • Precertification
  • Expedited Review
  • Combined Certification Review: Design and Construction
  • Split Review: Design
  • Split Review: Construction
  • Appeals (Complex Credits)
  • Appeals (Credits)
  • Appeals (Expedited Review)
  • Project Credit Interpretation Requests (CIRs)

When it comes to Certification Approach, the following approaches also change the fee applicable to the project is a big way and change the whole documentation and certification process significantly:

  • Campus Approach
  • Group Approach
  • LEED Volume Program

Some certifications from LEED expire at the end of a defined period and either switching to a different rating is required (for example from BD+C to O+M) or a Recertification may become applicable – making this a recurring expense. USGBC LEED Certification can easily be the most expensive green building certification for a project. However, it is important to understand the costs along with their associated benefits in order to decide on the value derived from the rating.

As can be seen from above, there are many factors that influence the fee payable for USGBC LEED Certification over the certification lifecycle of the project. Which approach to take and how to integrate project parameters is a matter that requires careful planning. A green building specialist can help the project team in understanding and applying the appropriate methods and approaches to make sure the client is not paying extra for certification and that the true cost of certification can be budgeted for.

LEED Professional Credentials

GBCI manages the credential maintenance and accreditation process for people interested in acquiring such credentials. There are different types of credentials that one can earn, including:

  • LEED Green Associate
  • LEED Accredited Professional

While the Green Associate is an entry-level credential, it exposes interested individuals to principles of green building and gives them a taste of whether or not they would like to earn a LEED AP credential that is specific to each rating system of LEED.

So, a LEED AP specializing in Building Design and Construction (LEED AP: BD+C) is a separate credential from a LEED AP specializing in Operations and Maintenance (LEED AP: O+M). Such credentials are specialty LEED APs that demonstrate in-depth understanding of the certification process and various technical aspects as covered in the technical manuals of LEED for that particular rating system of LEED.

It is important to note here that the tests are theoretical with limited practical application testing and it is important to appreciate the specialty LEED APs that are working in the respective sectors and are maintaining their credentials through the GBCI Credential Maintenance program and otherwise through practical knowledge and experience in real life situations.

Another LEED credential is of LEED Fellow which is a nomination based credential for people who have been associated with LEED for a longer duration. 

In order to select a project team that works on your USGBC LEED Certification project, it is important to hire the technically qualified personnel, who can be LEED Credentialed. Which level of credentials are sufficient for your project team members and for your consultants can be explained better by a green building specialist so your team can function without having to wait for personnel to get trained (or not). 

What is Green Buildings?

"Energy-efficient structures designed with sustainability in mind, creating a greener and healthier environment." "These eco-conscious buildings minimize environmental impact while maximizing occupant comfort and well-being."


"Embark on a journey into the world of sustainable architecture and discover the transformative power of green buildings on our comprehensive overview page."

Standards Adopted

USGBC LEED Certification is a collection of technical guidance that the rating systems provide in addition to the existing technical codes and standards that are prevalent in the market. Taking an example of the LEED for Building Design and Construction rating system, the following categories of credits are to be attempted:

  • Integrative Process
  • Location and Transportation
  • Sustainable Sites
  • Water Efficiency
  • Energy and Atmosphere
  • Materials and Resources
  • Indoor Environmental Quality
  • Innovation
  • Regional Priority

As can be seen from the above, a wide variety of aspects related to a building’s design and construction are covered under these categories, each of which contain more specific credits with detailed technical requirements that ask a project to meet or exceed certain codes and standards available in the industry.

When working internationally, these codes and standards, and at times certain programs referred to in the USGBC LEED Certification technical guidance can be restrictive to a geographic region. In these circumstances, equivalent technical standards available in a local geography are evaluated and if found technically equivalent, variances are allowed. If not, the original standards need to be followed. 

This is crucial for the project technical teams that are working on various aspects of the project design such as HVAC, interior materials and finishes, plumbing codes, health and safety codes, etc. So, designing a USGBC LEED Certified project cannot be done as an afterthought. It requires an in-depth understanding of national and international codes and standards and most importantly, to show compliance as per procedures laid down under the respective rating systems. A green building specialist can help the project team in navigating through the complex maze of compliances and to check the submitted documents, drawings and calculations for compliance as per USGBC LEED Certification requirements.


Pros and Cons of Implementation

The USGBC LEED Certification is a great way to communicate the green building quotient of a project to stakeholders such as prospective buyers, tenants, financers, etc. However, simply paying the fees or registration does not guarantee the success of the project. Meticulous planning from as early on as selecting the architect is required to be followed throughout the design and construction lifecycle of the project. 

This may require extensive training of project personnel, and more importantly to conduct detailed technical analysis early on in the design process to make sure no costly mistakes are made later on. Energy simulations, daylight simulations, material lifecycle cost calculations, commissioning authority appointment, integration of landscape water and evapotranspiration rates, etc. – these are just examples of the complex computer based analysis required in the design of a green building. 

A project that ignores such analysis or does not pay heed to the codes and standards required for USGBC LEED Certification will not be able to secure any certification despite having paid the full fess to GBCI. This is a major constraint that is to be kept in mind by the project controller at all times and support the design team with a green building specialist accordingly. 

However, achieving the USGBC LEED Certification is a remarkable achievement and something that can get significant government incentives and market credibility for the project and its proponents. Proudly displaying the achievement through a plaque and certificate in the most prominent locations in the building boosts stakeholder confidence and increases the valuation of the project, while creating a technically superior building that is environmentally, socially and economically responsible in nature.

Get in touch with a green building specialist today to learn more about the pros and cons of implementing the USGBC LEED Certification for your project and how you too can benefit from its goodwill.


How Does It Work


Just after the registration process, the project can also work towards Precertification. Though this step is optional, it can be used to avail certain government incentives such as FAR and for marketing to prospective buyers and tenants. A thorough submission is required, almost at par with the final documentation.


During this phase of the project, the green building specialist plays a vital role in advising the project teams and preparing analysis reports, calculations and other forms of implementation documentation for submission to GBCI. The project needs to not only specify as per LEED, but also submit proofs of implementation to the certifying body.


The Certification is awarded at the end of construction almost at the time of handover of the project to the end users. The certification body can visit the project and through third party evaluators carry out detailed checking of the documents submitted, and revert with a review requiring a response and submission of additional clarifications.


What we offer

Green Building Consultancy

Specialists evaluate thermal, visual and acoustic Comfort + Performance including energy, water, materials, and similar

Certification Facilitation

Certification of any green building rating system is done as per choice and use + We can recommend as well

Savings Measurement

Measure and verify the on-ground results of implementing green building strategies that can continue through the lifecycle of the project.

Talk to a Specialist

Book a free 10-minute call.


Do you have any questions?

Making a green project is committing to making a better living environment for end users and creating assets that appreciate over time. The brand value of USGBC LEED Certification is a market catalyst that boosts sales and brings prestige to the project.

To earn LEED certification, you must follow a specific process outlined by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). This includes registering your project, completing the necessary documentation, and meeting the prerequisites and credits required for the desired LEED rating level (Certified, Silver, Gold, or Platinum). The certification process involves a thorough review of your project’s design, construction, and operations to ensure it meets the stringent criteria set by LEED.

LEED certification is not limited to new construction projects. In fact, LEED offers certification options for existing buildings through its LEED for Existing Buildings Operations and Maintenance (LEED EBOM) rating system. This allows owners and operators of existing buildings to improve their environmental performance, reduce operating costs, and showcase their commitment to sustainability. Whether it’s a new construction or an existing building, LEED certification can be pursued to demonstrate sustainable practices.

LEED offers various rating systems tailored to different project types, including new construction, interior fit-outs, schools, healthcare facilities, neighborhood developments, and more. The choice of the right LEED rating system depends on the project’s scope, such as building type, size, and goals. Each rating system has specific prerequisites and credits that align with the project’s objectives. It’s recommended to consult with LEED professionals or experts to determine the most suitable rating system for your specific project.


LEED certification is not limited to new construction projects. In fact, LEED offers certification options for existing buildings through its LEED for Existing Buildings Operations and Maintenance (LEED EBOM) rating system. This allows owners and operators of existing buildings to improve their environmental performance, reduce operating costs, and showcase their commitment to sustainability. Whether it’s a new construction or an existing building, LEED certification can be pursued to demonstrate sustainable practices.

Attadeep master
Attadeep master
April 21, 2023.
Execellant approach right from baseline to expert level. It is to beneficial both for a novice as well as professionals.
Shekhar Gupta
Shekhar Gupta
April 21, 2023.
Mr. Anupam has vast knowledge on the subject and has set stringent parameters for analysis of the building / project. The data produced will be used to obtain the Green certifications from various authorities. He has induced a sense of LIFE and our responsibility towards the environment through the building department.
Sanjay Kumar
Sanjay Kumar
April 21, 2023.
Nice company with deep and vast experiences in the field green building design and consultation
Kapil Gupta
Kapil Gupta
April 21, 2023.
Fantastic lecture series, well curated presentation materials, in depth understanding of Green building ratings mechanism and friendly behaviour. It was three days workshop and this was the best time for me to understand green buidling rating mechanism and interaction with one of the highly skilled Green Building consultant as well as a great human being. Thanks for it.
aishwarya richa
aishwarya richa
April 21, 2023.
Knowledge about each topic is quite appreciable. Professional, technical soundness about green bldg with architect view is quite helpful for understanding basics. His workshop is worth attending.
Biplab Nath
Biplab Nath
April 21, 2023.
I have undergone training for GHAR rating system . Mr Jain is immensely knowledgeable and helped me in acquiring the same upto my satisfaction within a short period of time.
narendra pathak
narendra pathak
April 21, 2023.
Excellent demonstration regarding green building norms and methods of rating based on GHAR green building criteria .
Joydeep Sengupta
Joydeep Sengupta
April 21, 2023.
Enjoyed thoroughly each session of the training program attended at CPWD Training Academy. It has been great exchanges of ideas. Learnt a lot from Mr Anupam Jain on the existing Green rating systems, the practices in the real world and last but not the least, the newly developed rating system of CPWD, that is GHAR.
Narendra Sharma
Narendra Sharma
April 21, 2023.
Very useful for us. We learnt a lot.


Get in Touch

We do outstanding work with USGBC LEED Certification, & we’re outstanding to work with.


1014-D, Tower B, The Ithum, A-40, Sector 62, Noida

eco:inch is committed to protecting and respecting your privacy, and we’ll only use your personal information to administer your account and to provide the services you requested from us. From time to time, we would like to contact you about our services, as well as other services that may be of interest to you. If you consent to us contacting you for this purpose, please tick below to say how you would like us to contact you:
You may unsubscribe from these communications at any time. For more information on how to unsubscribe, our privacy practices, and how we are committed to protecting and respecting your privacy, please review our Privacy Policy. By clicking submit below, you consent to allow eco:inch to store and process the personal information submitted above to provide you the content requested.