Homestar recognises ‘innovative’ initiatives with a significant sustainability benefit that either sit outside the framework of credits within the tool, or that significantly exceed their benchmarks. There are up to 10 points available for these innovations and a project can apply for any feature to be recognised as an innovation. If you have an idea for an innovation in your project, we encourage you to talk to us as early in the process as possible. Email  

Suggest a New Innovation

A new, previously un-awarded innovation will require an application using the innovation request form. Innovation submissions are free (no fee) and are reviewed by a subject matter expert.

Innovation submissions should be made prior to round 1 project submission to allow time for external review. If found to be eligible, an appropriate number of points will be conditionally awarded and the NZGBC will issue guidance on documentation requirements to confirm these points at the rating stage.

Previously Approved Innovations

If an innovation submission is accepted and points are awarded, it will be recorded in the register of previously approved innovations. Other projects may then apply for innovation points in this register. These should be applied for prior to round 1 submission using the innovation request form.

Click here to view register of previously approved innovations

Innovation Challenges

Green Star and Homestar have published a list of innovation challenges. These recognise initiatives that don’t currently fit in to the main framework of these tools but that we believe are important to encourage and recognise. They cover environmental, social and economic sustainability initiatives. While some challenges only apply to some tools, others apply across all our tools. Several current innovation challenges were originally published by the Green Building Council of Australia for Green Star projects there but have been adapted for Green Star and Homestar projects in New Zealand. These should be applied for prior to round 1 project submission using the innovation request form.

Click here to go see the table of innovation challenges

How to apply

Innovations should be submitted for approval prior to round 1 project submission, regardless of whether you are targeting a new innovation, a previously approved innovation, or an innovation challenge.

If you are targeting a previously approved innovation or an innovation challenge, please state this clearly on the submission form and include the innovation number. You may include multiple previously approved innovations and innovation challenges in one form. Make sure to include a short description of what evidence is provided (if appropriate, including a drawing/ photo or specification extract to show what is included). You do not need to justify why it should get points as this is already established.

Include the response letter from the NZGBC in the project submission with the evidence specified on the innovation challenge summary, previously approved innovation summary, or in the innovation response letter from the NZGBC.