Builder FAQs

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An EarthCraft builder is an individual that is approved to construct structures bearing the EarthCraft label. There are several steps to becoming a certified builder, the first of which is attending a course taught at the SWEET center in Atlanta to familiarize builders with the standards of the EarthCraft program.

For those interested in becoming a certified EarthCraft builder, see our Builder Certification Process document.

Questions regarding the EarthCraft Builder Training

Are there pre-course requirements?

There is a required Basics of Building Science online learning module that all class participants must review prior to attending the EarthCraft House Builder Training. It takes approximately one hour. The link to this module will be provided to you in an email from education@southface.org after you register for the course. Be sure to spend some time reviewing this online module prior to attending the training.

The Basics of Building Science online module is required because the EarthCraft Builder Training is an accelerated learning environment, and information provided in this Basics of Building Science module is part of the EarthCraft House Builder Exam.

How do I sign up for the course?

A list of all upcoming EarthCraft trainings can be found under the Training Courses tab to the left.

How soon before class do I have to take the online course?

You can take the online module anytime before the class. Remember, your laptops will be closed during the class, so you will not be able to review this module.

It takes approximately one hour to review the Basics of Building Science module.

Can I still show up if I haven’t taken the online course yet?

The Basics of Building Science online learning module must be taken prior to attending the EarthCraft House Builder Training. If, due to extenuating circumstances, you are unable to take the online module prior to the training, your Certificate of Attendance for the training will not be issued and the CEUs for the training will not be processed until you complete the Basics of Building Science.



Post-Training Information

Is the Builder Training eligible for continuing education credits?

The EarthCraft Trainings qualify attendees for CE credit from the following institutions: Construction Specifications Institute, Green Building Certification Institute, American Institute of Architects, Certified Professional Home Builder, Building Performance Institute and Georgia Real Estate Commission.

  • EC Builder: 7 learning units from AIA, .8 CEUs from CSI, 8 hrs from GBCI, 6 hrs from CPHB, 7hrs from BPI.
  • EC Realtor: 3 hrs from the Georgia Real Estate Commission. Version 2013.10.08 – 2 – EarthCraft New Builders FAQ
  • EC HVAC Trade Contractor: Currently submitted for continuing education approval from BPI, CPHB and GBCI.

It is critical that all attendees sign in and sign out of the course as directed by the trainer in order to receive full CEU credit.

Will I get a certificate of attendance?

All course attendees will be provided a course attendance certificate. You must be present for the entirety of the course to receive this certificate; it will not be mailed to attendees not present at the end of the course.

I’ve taken the EarthCraft House Builder Training. Now what do I do?

After completing the training, the next step to becoming a certified EarthCraft builder is to pass the EarthCraft House Builder Exam. A link to the exam will be emailed to attendees at the end of the course, additionally the exam is available on our site here. It is strongly recommended that the exam be taken no more than a month after the training is completed.



Builder Exam Information

How do I take the exam?

You will be provided the link to take the exam no more than 10 business days after the EarthCraft House Builder Training you attended.
The exam link can also be found on the Builder Certification page.

How long does the exam take?

This exam is open book and takes approximately two hours to complete.

What score is needed to pass the exam?

A score of 80% or greater is required to pass the exam.

How many times can I take the exam?

Our current policy is that you may take the exam up to three times in order to achieve a passing score of 80 or higher. If you have taken the exam more than twice without passing, please contact EarthCraft Administration (404-604-3644) to discuss allowing more attempts. This policy is subject to change.

How much will the exam cost?

Our current policy is that the exam is free. This policy is subject to change.

What can I use to study for the exam?

The reference for the EarthCraft House Builder Exam is the EarthCraft Manual. The manual provides detailed information about the EarthCraft program, project certification process, and basic building science. The manual also includes: EarthCraft House forms, exhibits, worksheets and guidelines. The exam is open book so any notes from the course or material found on our resources page may be used during the exam.



Next Steps

Am I certified after I complete the exam?

There are a few additional steps to certification after the exam is completed.
After passing the exam, please submit your application to become a Certified EarthCraft House online at here. You will have to upload your certificate of passing and enter your score on your application. Please be sure to select ‘existing EarthCraft House builder’ on the application.

How do I certify project?

New projects need to be registered in the planning stages. Links to register projects can be found under the Project Registration tab to the left.

Consulting the EarthCraft worksheet and communicating with a Technical Advisor are key components in ensuring adherence to EarthCraft standards. A builder’s Technical Advisor will go over the worksheet guidelines to help decide which aspects fit the project goals and ensure adherence to EarthCraft standards. The worksheet and guidelines are found on the Resources page. To contact a Technical Advisor in your area, see here.

Rejoining the EarthCraft Program

EarthCraft Builders who have been dropped from the EarthCraft program as a result of not building an EarthCraft certified house in the past 12 months and/or having their membership lapse are able to rejoin the program.

  • If the builder’s membership lapses but the builder has built an EarthCraft certified house in the last 12 months, the builder is required to retake and pass the EarthCraft House Builder exam, but not required to retake the EarthCraft House Builder Training Class prior to rejoining the program. Once the builder has passed the exam, he or she is required to reregister as an EarthCraft builder with the Atlanta HBA and his or her local HBA membership must be in good standing.
  • If the builder’s membership lapses and the builder has not built an EarthCraft certified house in the last 12 months, the builder is required to both retake and pass the EarthCraft House Builder Training Class and exam prior to rejoining the program. Once the builder has passed the exam, he or she is required to reregister as an EarthCraft builder with the Atlanta HBA and his or her local HBA membership must be in good standing.