Selecting a consultant can seem like an overwhelming task. This article will inform you as to what a LEED consultant does, how much they make, and how to start your career as a Project Manager. From start to finish, your project and potential score depend upon the consultants you pick and the choices you make. When choosing a consultant, you want to make sure your choice provides the best possible outcome for your building.
LEED Consulting Services
A LEED consultant is in charge of various responsibilities depending upon the scope they are hired for. One of the main responsibilities in LEED consulting is the scorecard. The scorecard is your roadmap to a certification on your building, and is an important part of the process. The scorecard includes the various prerequisites and credits a building can earn by completing different tasks. It outlines the entire project and ensures your team has the same goals.
Step 1 - Researching Consultants
Researching consultants is easy. Simply use this directory to search for accredited people. You can cross-reference your research on whom you pick in a LEED consulting service to work with. Each individual is listed if they have completed an accreditation and have a public profile.
The directory on the USGBC website provides you with:
- Accreditation Type
- Personal Bio
- LEED Consulting Business Profile
Step 2 – Expected Salary
$82k-130k per year (salary.com)
$55k-140k per year (glassdoor.com)
Because LEED consultants are paid generously, you can expect an average hourly rate of around $35 per hour for working on a project. Depending upon expertise and experience, that rate can approach $85 hourly. However, typical buildings are worked on a bid style system based upon square footage and building scope. This eliminates the pressure of paying hourly and lets you understand the price upfront for your goals. A Project Manager will evaluate the scope of work and provide a bid for the project.
Step 3 – Becoming a Consultant
Becoming a consultant for the rating system is no simple matter. You must distinguish yourself first by passing two tests. Each exam consists of 100 multiple-choice questions and is graded on a weighted scale of 125-200 points. A passing score of 170 (B+) is needed to achieve your accreditation. The first test is the Green Associate exam. It is a tier one certification that will give you the Green Associate credential. The second test in the accreditation system is the Accredited Professional credential. A tier two designation, the Accredited Professional credential, is what comprises the majority of LEED consultants.
View The Program
We recommend the master class program developed by GBES for candidates looking to take on the role of project manager by participating on real buildings, similar to projects that would be worked on by a large LEED consulting firm. With this program, you and your team will dive right into a complete BD+C project. You will learn the fundamentals of taking a building from conception to development. This program comes complete with practice tests for any of your exams.
Step 4 – Taking the LEED Exams
The exams are comprised of 100 multiple-choice questions. The questions are broken down into three types of styles:
A score is given at the end of your exam between 125-200. You must pass with a 170 (B+) to achieve your accreditation. To prepare for these types of questions, it is recommended having experience in exam prep. We recommend GBES for all of your exam prep needs. Since the early 2000s, GBES has led the field of sustainable education. They are responsible for helping over 150,000 customers achieve success. After successfully completing your exam and earning your credential, you are ready to start your application to work at a LEED consulting firm.