It’s not easy being green, but the number of environmentally-conscious homes is on the rise.

According to a report by the U.S. Green Building Council, the number of LEED, or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, certified homes has increased by 19% since 2017. USGBC's report stated that there are more than 400,000 single-family, multifamily and affordable housing units that are LEED certified. 

When certifying units, LEED takes into account categories such as water efficiency, energy and atmosphere, materials and resources, indoor environmental quality, innovation and more. According to the report, LEED-certified homes, on average, use 20% to 30% less energy than a traditional home, with some homeowners reporting up to 60% savings. In addition to saving energy and being environmentally friendly, certified homes are designed to support human health and comfort, USGBC stated in the report. 

“One of the most important investments a person will make is in their home, and the quality of these spaces can have a direct impact on an individual’s health and well-being,” said Mahesh Ramanujam, USGBC president and CEO. “As an industry, we want to find ways to raise everyone’s living standard, so we need to prioritize the construction and remodeling of homes so that they are not only environmentally friendly, but they also have the power to improve the quality of life for all human beings.”

In addition to outlining the increase in LEED-certified homes, the report also shows the top 10 states for LEED certified homes in the U.S. California appears at the top of the list, with close to 40,000 certified residential units. Texas follows at No. 2 with more than 24,500. The top five states included:

1. California

2. Texas

3. New York

4. Washington

5. Colorado