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Greening your MLS
Understanding and Defining the Green Listing Data Fields
By MJ Minton, Associate Broker, EcoBroker©

Do you have a listing that you believe has some green features you want to market?
Not sure what some of the green MLS data fields really mean?

Below are some green definitions to help you enter information and market correctly.

Green - The definition comes from Presidential Executive Order 13101 and defines it as "products or services that reduce the health and environmental impacts compared to similar products and services used for the same purpose."

LEED - Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. Currently the most definitive certification granted by the United States Green Building Council. LEED Certification is based on several categories such as site sustainability, energy, materials, and indoor air quality. Buildings are divided into four certifications, basic, silver, gold and platinum.

Energy Star - A Certification granted by the Environmental Protection Agency and the US Department of Energy for household appliances and buildings that perform at specified levels of energy. Devices carrying the Energy Star logo save 20 - 30% on average.

Active Solar - A system designed to convert solar radiation into usable energy. It requires a mechanical device, usually a pump or fan to collect the sun's energy.

Passive Solar Energy - Natural techniques to provide energy, such as situating a building, daylighting, south facing windows, natural shading and ventilation, and building materials that absorb heat from the sun and slowly release it.

Geothermal heat pump - is a central heating and/or cooling system that pumps heat to or from the ground. It uses the earth as a heat source (in the winter), or a heat sink (in the summer). This design takes advantage of the moderate temperatures in the ground to boost efficiency and reduce the costs of heating and cooling. A heat sink is an environment or object that absorbs and dissipates heat from another object using thermal contact device.

Solar Tubes - Tubular skylights that provide natural light from the ceiling using minimal space. They look like an overhead light fixture, but do not use electricity.

Dual Flush toilets - Water saving toilets that have two buttons to flush. The large button is for solids and the smaller one for liquid wastes.

Double Paned Windows - Windows consisting of 2 glass panels set in a frame separated by a space of ½ inch to ¾ inch which can be filled with air or a non toxic gas like argon to improve insulation.

Fiber Cement Siding - A nonwood exterior siding product that has the look of wood siding without the maintenance and costs associated with it. Constructed from cement, sand and cellulose fiber. It resists termites, water, and fire damage and lasts 50 years.

Hardiplank - A name brand fiber cement siding produced by the James Hardie Commercial Company.

Masonite - is a thin board made from a natural process of steamed wood chips that are pressed together under pressure to form a solid board. It is rather inexpensive and easy to produce and use.

PaperStone Counters - A green, sustainable product made from 100% post consumer recycled paper and petroleum free resin that contains natural ingredients like cashew nut shell liquid.

Silestone Counters - A durable counter top made from natural quartz, one of the fourth hardest minerals in nature.

Corian Counters - A manufactured product with the look of natural stone.

Grey Water - Water from household baths, laundry, and other sources (excluding human waste) that is reused for non potable activities like gardening or for flushing toilets.

Rainwater Harvesting - Is the gathering or storing of rainwater.

Rain Barrels - Barrels positioned at the end of roof gutters or a buildings drainage system to capture water for reuse like watering gardens.

Rain Gardens - An area of native and deep rooted plants in low lying areas that capture storm water runoff and lessen damage to streams and waterways by encouraging absorption into the ground.

Green Roof - Rooftop growing systems designed to reduce the temperature of the building's rooftop by absorbing heat, dust, and providing sound and temperature insulation to the building as well as regulating storm water flow.

Naturescaping - Landscaping that uses native plants to conserve and create natural habitats.

Manufactured Homes - Mobile homes or house trailers that can be connected to utilities and parked in one place used as permanent housing.

Modular homes - are built in sections, off site in a climate controlled factory setting where they are not subject to weather conditions. They are delivered to the home site and placed on foundations. Modular homes and manufactured homes are not the same thing.

Energy Audit - An onsite inspection to assess how much energy your home consumes and to determine what measures can be made to make the home more energy efficient. This includes all building components, construction, location and orientation, appliances, and other energy efficient features.

Home Energy Rating System (HERS) - Is a system for collecting and processing data to provide a standard of measurement for a home's energy efficiency and its potential for improvement.


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