MALTA, N.Y. — Three leading organizations representing the home inspection, real estate, and green building industries have approved the Building Performance Institute’s (BPI’s) Building Science Principles (BSP) Certificate of Knowledge for the continuing education of their members. The BSP Certificate is earned by passing an exam on the principles of building science behind house-as-a-system energy efficiency upgrades.

The American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI) has approved the BSP Certificate for five continuing education credits for its member home inspectors. ASHI members can earn the credits by studying the BSP exam’s companion reference guide and passing the online exam. ASHI’s nearly 6,000 individual home inspectors represent solely owned, franchise, and multi-inspector companies.

The National Association of Realtors’ (NAR’s) Green REsource Council has approved the BSP Certificate as an alternative training program credit for realtors to earn NAR’s Green Designation. The Green Designation is the only NAR conferred real estate designation for agents to learn about energy efficiency and sustainability issues pertaining to real estate. To become an NAR Green Designee, members must complete three NAR courses on real estate and sustainability issues. Studying the BSP Reference Guide and passing the BSP online exam qualifies as an alternative to the first level NAR course.

The U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC’s) Green Building Certification Institute (GBCI) awards six continuing education hours for studying the BSP Reference Guide and passing the online exam. Credentials are maintained in two-year cycles, and LEED Green Associates must earn 15 continuing education hours per cycle, while LEED APs must earn 30 continuing education hours per cycle. The GBCI provides independent oversight of professional credentialing and project certification programs related to green building.

BPI said a foundation in residential building science is critical for professionals in the building and real estate trades. The principles of building science demonstrate how various components of the home interact to affect the home’s overall performance. By studying the BSP Reference Guide, readers gain an understanding of the relationship between the building envelope, insulation, heating, air conditioning, mechanical ventilation, lighting, appliances, and other systems of the home. Readers learn how all of these systems affect the comfort, health, and safety of occupants and durability of the home. They discover why improving the energy efficiency of the home is the first step toward solar, geothermal, or other renewable energy improvements.

The BSP exam is a 100-question multiple choice exam that can be taken anytime online. Candidates prepare for the exam by first studying the companion reference guide.

BPI said it will release the second edition of the reference guide this summer. New features include an expanded solar section, a chapter on offering customers energy ratings of their homes using the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) Home Energy Score, and a Spanish-language edition of the guide and exam.

For more information about the BSP Certificate, visit

Publication date: 8/4/2014

Want more HVAC industry news and information? Join The NEWS on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn today!